Israeli army shoots ‘physically disabled’ Palestinian

Israeli troops shot and wounded a physically disabled Palestinian man during an arrest operation in the southern West Bank city of Hebron on Thursday, a prisoners' rights group said.

Motazz Obeidu, 32, was "seriously wounded by Israeli army gunfire during an arrest operation" at dawn, the Ramallah-based Prisoners Club said, describing him as "physically disabled" although it did not say how.

Local residents said the arrest took place at Obeidu's shop.

The Israeli army confirmed that a man had been shot after he turned violent during an arrest operation, but did not comment on whether or not he was disabled.

"During the apprehension, the Palestinian suspect … began to act violently, throwing an axe, a gas canister and a wheelbarrow at soldiers, injuring two of them," a spokesperson told AFP.

"He then attempted to steal one of the soldiers' weapons. The soldiers fired towards him to stop him and he was lightly injured," she said, indicating that Obeidu was treated at the scene and then taken to an Israeli hospital.

Meanwhile, Palestinian security sources said troops arrested eight people in Burin village near the northern city of Nablus during an overnight raid.

It was not immediately clear why they had been arrested and there was no comment from the army.

Separately, a media watchdog urged the military to investigate the "deliberate shooting" of a Palestinian photographer who was hit in the face by a rubber-coated steel bullet in Bethlehem on 8 April.

Mohamed al-Azza "was taken to hospital after being hit in the right cheekbone by the bullet" while taking photos of Israeli soldiers inside the Aida refugee camp, Reporters Without Borders (RSF) said in a statement released on Wednesday.

And two rights groups said soldiers near Ramallah had arrested a Palestinian teenager, who holds US nationality, on charges of throwing stones.

In a statement released late on Wednesday, prisoner rights groups Addameer and Defense for Children International (DCI) said a 14-year-old boy identified as Mohamed K had been seized during a pre-dawn raid on his home in Silwad near Ramallah on 5 April.

"Mohamed was arrested without a warrant, denied access to an attorney and interrogated without the presence of a parent," said Addameer lawyer Randa Wahbe.

"There is also evidence that he was mistreated during his arrest and transfer. It is difficult to find a right that was not violated," she said, indicating that the youth, who suffers from a heart murmur, was being held at Ofer military prison near Ramallah.

The army confirmed the 5 April arrest, naming the teen as Mohamed Khaliq and saying he was indicted by a military court on Thursday on charges of "hurling rocks at Israeli vehicles and security personnel on multiple occasions."

It said his remand in custody had been extended until 14 April, with a military source confirming that he would undergo a medical examination before that date.

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