Jerusalem police kill unarmed Palestinian at Old City gate

Family says dead man had special needs, police say they noticed a 'suspicious object,' that they claim looked like a gun, and told him to stop in his tracks, after which the suspect began to flee

Nina Fuchs , Agencies|
Jerusalem police shot dead an unarmed Palestinian they suspected was carrying a weapon near Jerusalem's Old City on Saturday.
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  • Police said he was carrying "a suspicious object that looked like a pistol" and ran away when ordered to stop. The police say they chased him on foot and opened fire.
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    אירוע הירי במזרח ירושלים: איאד אלחלאק פלסטיני בעל צרכים מיוחדים הוא ההרוג
    אירוע הירי במזרח ירושלים: איאד אלחלאק פלסטיני בעל צרכים מיוחדים הוא ההרוג
    Iyad Halak
    (Photo: Courtesy)
    A police spokesman did not immediately respond when asked whether the man was in fact carrying a gun.
    The family of the young man says he has a mental disability.
    The man was later identified as Iyad Halak, 32, a resident of East Jerusalem.
    An initial investigation has been opened into the matter and a report has been filed in the Prosecutor's Office following the shooting.
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    משטרה בזיאת ניסיון הפיגוע בירושלים
    משטרה בזיאת ניסיון הפיגוע בירושלים
    Border Police officers near Jerusalem Old City's Lions Gate
    (Photo: Israel Police)
    Joint List MK Ofer Cassif said following the man's death that "the incident today in Jerusalem can only be defined as murder by police officers."
    According to Cassif, Israel's government shares some of the blame for the incident.
    "The incitement from the government's corridors has worked as planned and now every Palestinian is a terrorist until proven otherwise. 'Terrorists' are executed even when lying on the ground or running for their lives," he said.
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    עופר כסיף
    עופר כסיף
    Joint List MK Ofer Cassif
    The shooting came a day after Israeli soldiers killed a Palestinian in the West Bank who they said had tried to ram them with his vehicle. No Israelis were wounded in either incident.
    Tensions have risen in recent weeks as Israel has pressed ahead with plans to annex large parts of the occupied West Bank in line with President Donald Trump's Middle East plan, which strongly favors Israel and was rejected by the Palestinians.
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