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In pictures: Tensions in Hebron high as slain protester buried

Palestinians burry 40-year-old Nader Mohammed Edrees, who was shot with live Israeli ammunition during a demonstration in the West Bank
Men carry the body of Nader Mohammed Edrees toward a cemetery in a funeral procession after midday prayers (MEE/Kelly Lynn)

Through a sea of yellow Fateh flags, the body of 40-year-old activist Nader Mohammed Edrees was carried on the shoulders of friends and family into Hebron’s Al Hussein Mosque just after midday, where hundreds assembled to participate in funeral prayers on August 9th.  The procession march to the burial site gathered hundreds more along the way, as clusters of men echoed calls to resist Israeli occupation.

The previous afternoon, Edrees was shot in the chest with live ammunition in Bab Al Zawiya during a demonstration against Israeli aggression in Gaza and the West Bank.  A YouTube video captured the moments leading up to the shot, where Edrees stood, posing no apparent threat to Israeli forces while youth threw stones adjacent to his position.  A pop is heard and he immediately collapses before being rushed off to Al Ahli Hospital.

Dr. Ashraf El Sebaid received Edrees as he was transferred from Al Ahli to Al Mezan Hospital after an initial operation.

“He was hit exactly on his heart,” said Sabaid. 

Approximately 25 units of blood were administered during the second operation that finished around 8pm that evening.  Edrees survived the day but developed a complication that hindered his blood’s ability to coagulate and died around 2am the next morning.

Nader’s death suggests a pattern in the IDF’s recent use of force.  

“It’s a very stressful time for us as medical team,” said Sabaid, “this is the third case like this we’ve seen in the past two weeks. 

A 12-year-old and a 25-year-old were both shot in the chest in separate incidents during clashes but survived after operations at Al Mezan hospital.

“I have never broken down like this, I have to go home to deal with the trauma.  Most of them are young patients,” said Sabaid.

Edrees was laid to rest in a small cemetery outside the old city of Hebron.  Hordes of children climbed fences and bustled along rooftops for a glimpse before his grave was sealed.  Family members mourned and left before additional speeches were made over loudspeaker encouraging resistance to the state of Israel.

Tensions continue to escalate surrounding the current operation in Gaza and increasing violence use by the Israeli military in repressing protests in the West Bank.  At least 18 Palestinians have been killed by live fire from Israeli forces in the past month, including 11-year-old Khalil Mohammed Al Anati who was shot in the back by Israeli soldiers in front of his home on Sunday the 10th in Al Fawwar Refugee Camp near Hebron. 

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