A 20-year-old illegal Palestinian laborer died Wednesday in Tel Aviv while trying to escape Israeli cops.
When officers arrived at the construction site where the suspect was working, he tried to escape but fell dozens of meters down an elevator shaft to his death.
Border Police officers arrived at the south Tel Aviv site on a routine search for illegal workers. When they pulled a suspected group to the side for questioning, the man bolted.
A chase ensued across several blocks, ending with the Palestinian jumping into another construction site located on Herzl Street. It seemed the man jumped down an elevator shaft in an attempt to hide from the cops, not knowing the height of the fall.
Officers found him wounded at the bottom of the hole and attempted to give him medical attention while paramedics were on the way. Despite their best efforts, he was pronounced dead shortly after.
Police have opened an investigation into the incident.
Kav LaOved (Worker's Hotline), an Israeli NGO which aims to protect the rights of the most disadvantaged workers in Israel, said in a statement: "We are sorry for the unnecessary and cruel death of the Palestinian construction worker. The worker, who did not hold a permit, fled and the Border Police started chasing him. During the chase, the worker fell into a shaft tens of meters deep at a different construction site and died.
"As is well known, construction sites are high-risk and accident-prone places. Police officers were not allowed to pursue the worker under these circumstances, and without him posing any danger. If only the State of Israel would redirect its enforcement efforts to safeguarding workers' rights instead of unnecessary and dangerous pursuits of the most disadvantaged of workers."