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Conflicting stories emerge after IDF kills 70-year-old

Palestinians say troops in Hebron shot man dead in his home during search; IDF says soldier forced to respond when group of Palestinians tried to take his weapon by force. Man's wife also moderately wounded by gunfire

A battle of conflicting versions erupted Wednesday morning as IDF and Palestinian officials detail the circumstances surrounding the death of 70-year-old Yihye al-Jabri who was shot after troops entered his house in Hebron.


The army said that during an arrest operation in Hebron an officer and several soldiers entered a Palestinian home. The officer was immediately assaulted by several Palestinians and was lightly wounded in the process.


The army then said that a group of over a dozen Palestinians surrounded a soldier and tried to wrestle his weapon away from him, tearing the carrying strap affixed to it. The soldier responded, firing his weapon and killing one Palestinian while wounding three others.


The army said that it had detained the two wanted men it had been seeking and that both Palestinians were taken for questioning.


Palestinian sources said that the elderly man's son, Salah al-Jabri is a wanted man and that IDF troops in pursuit of Salah first encircled the al-Jabri's home before storming it, opening fire as they entered.


The sources said that Salah al-Jabri fled the scene and was not arrested.


The Palestinians further said that civilians have never made any attempt to forcibly steal the weapon of an IDF soldiers.


The Palestinians who were wounded received emergency medical treatment at the scene by the IDF troops and were evacuated to a hospital in Hebron.


Military sources confirmed that an initial probe into the incident has already been completed and that the findings indicate that the soldier followed procedure.


Palestinians slammed the IDF's version however, calling it "completely false. How can you explain that a man was killed and his wife was seriously wounded in her head and other family members were shot and hospitalized?"


First Gaza air strike since weekend 

In a separate in incident Palestinian gunmen opened fire at an IDF force operating northwest of Jenin and detonated an explosive device against soldiers operating inside the city. No injuries or damage were reported. During the night IDF forces arrested eight wanted Palestinians throughout the West Bank.


Meanwhile IDF aircraft on Wednesday morning targeted two Palestinians planting an explosive device near the Jabaliya refugee camp in northern Gaza. Palestinian sources said that one of the men was killed and another was wounded.


The attack was the first air strike since Friday. In recent days there has been a noticeable drop in the number of Qassam attacks from Gaza and as a result military activity has also lessened. On Tuesday the Sderot rocket sirens only sounded twice after Palestinian terror groups launched two Qassam rockets. Both rockets fell near the security fence between Israel and Gaza, causing no injuries.


Ali Waked contributed to this report


פרסום ראשון: 06.06.07, 10:22
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