Blood on Qawasme's bed
Photo: AFP
Mourners in house
Photo: AFP

Hebron man's wife: Punish troops who shot him

IDF probing death of 65-year-old Amr Qawasme, claiming soldiers opened fire due to suspicious movement. His wife rejects explanation, tells Ynet: 'They are lying, he was asleep when they killed him.' Division commander: Such tragic events happen

The Israel Defense Forces expressed its regret over the death of Amr Qawasme, 65, who was shot by soldiers during a detention operation in Hebron. But his wife, Sobheye, finds no comfort in the apology.


Left with nine children, she claims the soldiers lied when they said her husband had threatened them. "We are human beings. The Israeli side must respect us," she told Ynet on Friday.


Judea and Samaria Division Commander Brigadier-General Nitzan Alon addressed the Hebron incident on Friday afternoon, saying that the force opened fire after spotting a suspicious movement from Qawasme's direction while entering an apartment in the area.


"You must see it from the perspective of the force, which arrived to arrest terror activists, after a quick standing operation procedure. Such an incident, as tragic as it may be, can happen among dozens and hundreds of arrest which end without any casualties."


Qawasme's family says he was asleep when he was shot, but the IDF claims he wasn't in bed and his hand was hidden. The soldiers thought he was hiding a weapon or another device with which he may have threatened them.


"We will continue probing the event to understand exactly what happened," Alon said. "I don't think there is any reason to fear that the incident will affect our relations with the Palestinians or any other aspects."


'60 armed soldiers broke into our house'

Qawasme's wife described the events that occurred in her house early on Friday morning. "They broke into our house, about 60 armed soldiers. When they broke in I was praying but I immediately stopped to see what they wanted.


"One of the soldiers forcibly closed my mouth with his hand while another went into my old and ill husband's room and shot him in the head until he was dead," she said in tears. "Everything that happened was simply an act of vengeance on Palestinian families."


"My crippled son was in the house during the incident, he is in a very rough mental state. I myself have yet to digest the events, how and why it happened. Everything the soldiers said about my husband trying to attack them or interrupt them was a lie – he was killed while he was sleeping. I can barely stand on my own two feet, our economic situation is very bad and I don't know how I will deal with life after this disaster which has fallen on our heads."


She added that "we will not stand by and allow this disaster to be forgotten. We will make every effort to reach the people who shot my husband and caused his death. We will ask the responsible elements to punish those responsible for the mental, social and financial anguish they have caused us."


The Palestinian police have also launched an investigation into the incident, claiming that IDF forces made a mistake when they entered the second floor of the building instead of the first floor. "We will appeal to the responsible elements to intervene."


Hassan Shaalan contributed to this report



פרסום ראשון: 01.07.11, 14:50
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