Drama as Israeli police gun down Palestinian knifeman
THIS is the dramatic moment a Palestinian man wearing what appears to be a suicide vest attacks Israeli police officers in the occupied West Bank.
The man is seen falling to the ground after being shot three times near a military checkpoint on the outskirts of the town of Ramallah yesterday. He is wearing what looks like a suicide vest, with wires protruding from black packages, though it is unclear whether it was viable.
Police said the assailant stabbed an officer in the shoulder. The shot man, identified as 29-year-old Mohammed Aqal from Hebron in the southern West Bank, died in hospital.
Police were checking to see whether the Palestinian posed as a journalist to get close to officers.
Footage of the incident on the Facebook page of a Palestinian newspaper shows the man retreating after stabbing the officer. Israeli forces shoot him in the legs
and again after he falls. A reporter is heard saying the man is holding a knife.
As two ambulances approached, several more shots were fired at the man and medical teams had to wait before taking him to hospital.
It came as groups of protesters clashed with Israeli forces as the fallout continued over Donald Trump’s announcement last week which recognised Jerusalem as Israel’s capital. Following Muslim prayers, Palestinians set fire to tyres and threw rocks at Israeli troops who responded with tear gas and live fire in the West Bank and along the Gaza border.
Two Palestinians were shot dead by Israeli forces in separate clashes along the Gaza border yesterday. Yasser Sokar, 32, and Ibrahim Abu Thurayeh, 29, became the fifth and sixth Palestinians to be killed in Gaza since Mr Trump’s announcement.
Palestinians were infuriated by the President’s decision because they saw it as siding with Israel on territorial issues, the most sensitive issue in the conflict.
Demonstrators have burned American and Israeli flags and trampled on pictures of Mr Trump amid fears his announcement would lead to major bloodshed.
Israel regards the whole of Jerusalem as its indivisible capital, while Palestinians claim the eastern sector as the capital of a future state.
Mr Trump’s announcement marked the end of decades of official United States neutrality on the issue.
Knifed: A soldier reels as the dark-jacketed assailant backs away
Shot: The attacker (with knife circled) falls on the road
Aftermath: The wounded knifeman holds his stomach as the stabbed soldier slumps to the ground in pain
Terror: The ‘suicide vest’ under the attacker’s coat