Israeli military forces have fatally shot a young Palestinian man and injured more than a dozen others amid fierce skirmishes with residents of the Qalandiya refugee camp in the occupied West Bank.
Witnesses said hundreds of Israeli soldiers and special forces raided the camp, located 10 kilometers (6.2 miles) north of al-Quds (Jerusalem), early on Tuesday and clashed with Palestinian youths.
The violence escalated after an hours-long gun battle erupted between some residents of the camp and the Israeli forces, who fired tear gas canisters and used live munitions against Palestinians homes.
A 22-year-old Palestinian man, identified as Iyad Omar Sajdiyah, sustained gunshot wounds to his head, and subsequently died. He was a student at the Faculty of Media in al-Quds University.
At least 15 Palestinians and one Israeli soldier were also injured during the imbroglio.
Israeli military helicopters hovered over the site, while an Israeli military jeep was set ablaze by angry Palestinian youths.
The occupied Palestinian territories have been the scene of heightened tensions. The latest wave of tensions was triggered by Israel’s imposition in August 2015 of restrictions on the entry of Palestinian worshipers into the al-Aqsa Mosque compound in East al-Quds.
Al-Aqsa Mosque is the third holiest site in Islam after Masjid al-Haram in Mecca and Masjid al-Nabawi in Medina.
The restrictions have enraged Palestinians, who are also angry at increasing violence by Israeli settlers frequently storming the al-Aqsa Mosque. The Palestinians say the Tel Aviv regime seeks to change the status quo of the compound.
More than 190 Palestinians, including children and women, have lost their lives at the hands of Israeli forces since the beginning of last October.
‘700 Palestinians under administrative detention’
Meanwhile, a Palestinian NGO said Monday that more than 700 Palestinians are currently being held in administrative detention, a policy under which Palestinian inmates are kept in Israeli detention facilities without trial or charge.
The rights body said Israel has given “administrative detention” orders to 84 Palestinians over the past 10 days.
It further noted that 39 Palestinians had been arrested and placed under administrative detention for periods ranging between two and six months, while the other 45 had their detention extended.
The figures were released days after Palestinian journalist Mohammed al-Qiq put an end to his grueling 94-day hunger strike that had exposed him to an immediate risk of death.
Qadura Fares, the head of the Palestinian Prisoners’ Club, said the Palestinian journalist will continue to receive medical treatment in Israeli hospitals until his release on May 21.
Qiq had been on hunger strike since November 25, 2015, to protest his administrative detention.
The father of two has been accused by Israel’s Shin Bet internal spy service of “terror activity” involving the Palestinian resistance movement, Hamas. He denied the charges and began the hunger strike after facing torture during interrogation.