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West Bank: Palestinian boy shot dead by Israeli forces in Nablus

Amer Abu Zeitoun, from Nablus, is the fourth Palestinian killed by Israeli forces in 2023
Palestinians hurl stones at an Israeli army vehicle during a raid on Palestinian suspects in Nablus, in the occupied West Bank on 21 December 2022 (AFP)

Israeli soldiers killed a Palestinian teenager in the occupied West Bank on Thursday, according to the Palestinian Ministry of Health.

Amer Abu Zeitoun, 16, was fatally shot in the head during an Israeli army raid on the Balata refugee camp in Nablus.  

He is the fourth Palestinian to be killed by Israeli forces since the beginning of 2023.

Palestinian media reported that Israeli soldiers raided the Balata refugee camp to carry out arrests, leading to confrontations with locals.

According to Haaretz, residents reported that Israeli soldiers surrounded the house of a released prisoner named Hassan Araishi for around an hour, before leaving after arresting him.

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The Lions Den, a group of armed Palestinian fighters, said on its Telegram channel that its "fighters were involved in night clashes in the Balata refugee camp in Nablus".

It was not immediately clear whether Abu Zeitoun was involved in the fire exchanges or if he was unarmed when shot dead. 

Israel's military said "armed suspects fired towards the soldiers, who responded with live fire" during an operation to arrest two people.

Zeitoun's death comes a day after the killing of 15-year-old Adam Essam Ayyad, who was shot in the chest with a live bullet in Dheisheh refugee camp, south of Bethlehem.

On 2 January, Mohammed Samar Khoshiyeh, 22, and Fouad Mohammed Abed, 25, were also killed by Israeli forces after being shot in a raid on the town of Kafr Dan, Jenin.

The year 2022 was the deadliest year for Palestinians in the West Bank and East Jerusalem since the Second Intifada. At least 167 Palestinians were killed, including 31 children. 

Although human rights groups have condemned Israel's "shoot-to-kill" policy for years, Palestinians have little hope of things changing during 2023, with Israel's most right-wing government in history taking over.

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