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Funeral held for Palestinian, shot by Israeli forces 3 months ago while crossing the street

Feb. 18, 2017 4:57 P.M. (Updated: Feb. 19, 2017 8:04 P.M.)
TULKAREM (Ma'an) -- Hundreds of Palestinian mourners joined a funeral procession in the city of Tulkarem in the northern occupied West Bank on Saturday for 25-year-old Muhammad Jallad, who died last week in Israeli custody, after being hospitalized for three months for gunshot wounds inflicted by Israeli forces while he was crossing the street on his way to a chemotherapy session.

Members of Jallad's family have firmly rejected the Israeli army's claim that the young man was attempting to carry out a stabbing attack on soldiers when they shot him.

The funeral procession marched from the Tulkarem's mosque to the cemetery, where Jallad was laid to rest. Palestinian Authority (PA) officials were present at the funeral, along with representatives of popular Palestinian movements and civil society groups.

The mourners shouted chants and slogans honoring Palestinian “martyrs” -- a term used for Palestinians killed by Israeli forces -- and condemned the near half-century long occupation of the Palestinian territory by the state of Israel.

The slain young man's bereaved father Thabet Jallad told Ma’an that the Israeli occupation was responsible for his son’s death, insisting that he had "died a martyr" as a result of the gunshot wound, and rejected claims made by Israeli authorities that his son had died of cancer.

The day Jallad was shot at the Huwwara checkpoint in Nablus, he was on his way to his final chemotherapy session after his cancer had gone into remission. After the shooting, he was taken to Israel’s Beilinson Hospital, where he died a week ago.

Head of the Palestinian Committee of Prisoners’ Affairs Issa Qaraqe told Ma’an that Jallad’s “martyrdom” was a “new crime on Israel’s record of criminal activities against the Palestinian people.”

He corroborated Jallad’s father’s comments that his death was not caused by his cancer, but due to the gunshot wound inflicted by Israeli forces.

According to a report by Israeli newspaper Haaretz, Jallad was on his way to what was supposed to be his last treatment session when he mistakenly took a shared taxi traveling in the wrong direction.

Upon realizing his mistake, he exited the vehicle and tried to run to the other side of the highway to get a taxi headed toward Nablus.

However, Israeli forces stationed nearby shot him as he was running, later claiming he had attempted to carry out an attack with a screwdriver.

Haaretz reported that after visiting Jallad's home in Tulkarem, they were unable to find a single person who believed the Israeli narrative that Jallad had attempted an attack.

While Jallad was being held in Beilinson Hospital's Intensive Care Unit for the last three months, his family was left in the dark about his condition, according to Haaretz, with his mother only being allowed to visit him in his hospital room once.

The family had not received any information from Israeli authorities concerning his death, and were only made aware that he succumbed to his wounds after pressing one of the physicians at the hospital for more information on their son's condition.

Jallad became the ninth Palestinian to be killed by Israeli forces this year, with 112 Palestinians killed in 2016, according to Ma’an documentation.

Israel has come under repeated criticism for using lethal force on Palestinians who posed no threat or could have been detained through nonlethal means, with the PLO, rights groups, and the United Nations condemning Israeli forces of carrying out "extrajudicial executions."
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