Hooded gunmen belonging to the al-Aqsa Martyrs' Brigades fired in the air following the funeral of Maisara Abu Hamdiyeh, the Palestinian security prisoner who died of cancer earlier this week in an Israeli hospital. The gunmen, who marched in Hebron after the funeral, also called for revenge against Israel.
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- West Bank: 2 Palestinians killed by IDF fire
Such processions by Palestinian gunmen in the West Bank are considered rare, although in February al-Aqsa gunmen fired in the air during the funeral of Palestinian prisoner Arafat Jaradat, who died in Megiddo Prison.
Gunmen fire in the air in Hebron (Video: Reuters, Eli Mandelbaum)
Prior to Abu Hamdiyeh's funeral, dozens of Palestinians threw stones at IDF soldiers and burned tires. A police officer and an Israeli civilian were lightly hurt from stones hurled in their direction near Ramallah. During the funeral itself some 100 Palestinians threw rocks at security forces near the Yitzhar settlement.
Rare occurrence. Al-Aqsa gunmen during funeral (Photo: Reuters)
Clashes continued after the procession near Hashoter Square in Hebron and the Bab al-Zawiya neighborhood in the city. Young Palestinians burned tires and hurled stones and bottles at soldiers, who responded with tear gas, stun grenades and rubber bullets. A foreign photojournalist sustained light wounds when a rock struck his leg during the violence.
Earlier, the funerals of two Palestinians who were killed by IDF fire on Wednesday after hurling firebombs at an army post near the settlement of Einav were held in Tulkarem.
Following the death of Amar Nasar, 17, and Najo Bilbisi, 18, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas' office condemned the "continued Israeli escalation over the past two days" and said the Israeli government bears responsibility for the "dangerous ramifications that will hurt the American efforts to resume negotiations."
You can contact Elior Levy, Ynet's Palestinian Affairs Correspondent, at: firstname.lastname@example.org
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