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A Palestinian man was killed Friday by Israeli forces during a raid in the north of the occupied West Bank, the Palestinian health ministry said. news online
Salah Sawafta, 58, “died of critical wounds, sustained by live bullets from the occupation (Israeli military) in the head, in Tubas this morning”, the ministry said in a statement.
The Israeli military said soldiers had come under fire during a raid in the town aimed at apprehending “a group of terrorists” planning attacks on Israeli civilians.
During the operation “armed Palestinians opened massive indiscriminatory fire”, and soldiers responded with “precise fire” that hit “a number of assailants”, it said in a statement.
A preliminary investigation by the army indicated soldiers had not fired in the direction of Sawafta, said a military source speaking on condition of anonymity.
The account was at odds with that of Tubas’s mayor, Hossam Daraghmeh, who said an Israeli soldier fired at Sawafta as he left dawn prayers.
“He left the mosque and was heading to his house wearing a prayer robe. There was a vengeful soldier stationed in a building near the municipality who shot him in the head,” he told AFP.
Daraghmeh said Sawafta had been unarmed when he was hit.
“This man did not have a stone or anything in his hand,” he said.
The Israeli military said five people were detained in overnight raids across the West Bank.
On Thursday, a 20-year-old Palestinian was killed by Israeli troops during clashes in the northern West Bank city of Nablus.
Israel has occupied the West Bank since the Six-Day War of 1967, when it seized the territory from Jordan.
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