IDF kills 2 Palestinians at checkpoint
Two men approaching post near West Bank village of Awarta shot to death after allegedly attempting to attack soldiers with pitchfork, broken bottle. Army says terror attack thwarted, troops acted according to procedures. Palestinians: They were holding agricultural equipment
Israel Defense Forces soldiers on Sunday killed two Palestinians approaching a military checkpoint near the West Bank village of Awarta, southwest of Nablus.
The two were said to be disguised as farmers. At a certain point, they began shouting and waving a pitchfork and a broken bottle.
Fighters from the Nachshon Battalion of the Kfir Brigade shot the Palestinians to death. A military official said the two had the intention and means to harm the soldiers, who acted according to procedures. The army is investigating the incident.
Palestinian sources in Nablus reported that the two were 19-year-old relatives Muhammad and Salah Kawarik from Awatra. According to the Palestinians, the two were holding agricultural equipment used as part of their work when they were shot to death by IDF soldiers. Their bodies were handed over to the Palestinian Red Crescent.
Security forces have been on a heightened state of alert since the morning hours for fear of disturbances due to the funeral of Mohammed Qadus, 16, who was shot dead Saturday by the IDF during a violent protest near Nablus.
The IDF continues to investigate the circumstances of his death and of the death of another protester, Osayed Qadus, 20. The military claims – contrary to the Palestinians – that the two were not hit with live fire. In the meantime, violent clashes reignited throughout the West Bank.
Some 100 Palestinians clashed with security forces near the Gush Etzion settlement of Tekoa on Sunday morning. The rioters hurled stones at the forces, who used crowd dispersal means to break up the group.
Hanan Greenberg, Shmulik Grossman and Ali Waked contributed to this report