Middle East

Palestinian boy with firework, 12, shot dead by Israeli border police at east Jerusalem refugee camp

By Abeer Salman, Kareem Khadder, Jeremy Diamond and Mitchell McCluskey, CNN

CNN  —  A 12-year-old Palestinian boy was shot and killed by a border police officer in Shuafat refugee camp in occupied east Jerusalem, according to hospital officials and an Israeli police spokesperson.

In a video obtained by CNN, the boy – Rami Al Halhouli – can be seen holding a lit firework above his head before the crackling sound of a single gunshot is heard. The boy falls to the ground just as the firework launches from his hand into the sky.

The Israeli police spokesperson said police forces responded to a “violent disturbance” at the refugee camp and a border police officer fired “towards a suspect who endangered the forces while firing aerial fireworks in their direction.”

The shooting came on the third night of the holy Muslim month of Ramadan, which has been a flashpoint in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict in previous years.

The police spokesperson said individuals on Tuesday night also threw Molotov cocktails and fired fireworks directly at security forces.

A video obtained by CNN shows Rami Al Halhouli holding a lit firework above his head before the crackling sound of a single gunshot is heard.

No security forces are visible in the video of Al Halhouli holding the firework, but the boy appears to be standing in front of the West Bank separation barrier.

In a second video filmed from above the scene after he is shot, the boy is lying on the ground as several people gather around him, while a woman screams and calls his name.

Israeli police said it was the second night in a row that Palestinians in Shuafat aimed Molotov cocktails and fireworks at police forces.

“Reinforced and undercover Border Guard forces were deployed to neutralize threats and prevent violent disturbances of order in the area,” the spokesperson said.

CNN has asked police for further evidence of the alleged disturbances they say took place in the refugee camp on Tuesday.

Al Halhouli arrived at Hadassah Mount Scopus hospital’s trauma unit in critical condition and was pronounced dead soon after, hospital officials told CNN.

There were no casualties among the Israeli forces who dispersed the demonstrators at the Shuafat camp, the police spokesperson said.

In a Telegram post, Israel’s far-right National Security Minister Itamar Ben-Gvir applauded the soldier who shot and killed the boy.

“I support the Border Guard fighters who are operating at this time and are risking their lives now against dozens of Arab rioters in Shu’fat,” Ben-Gvir said.

“I salute the soldier who killed the terrorist who tried to shoot fireworks at him and the troops – this is exactly how you should act against terrorists – with determination and precision,” he said.

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