Ramallah, June 2, 2022—Israeli forces shot and killed a 16-year-old Palestinian boy in the central occupied West Bank today.
Odeh Mohammad Odeh Sadaqa was shot with live ammunition in the back by Israeli forces around 4 p.m. on June 2 in the occupied West Bank village of Al-Midya, west of Ramallah in the central occupied West Bank, according to documentation collected by Defense for Children International - Palestine. Odeh was walking with two friends about 100 meters (330 feet) from his home when Israeli forces deployed in the area opened fire on them. As they attempted to flee, Odeh was struck in the back with a single bullet that struck his heart and exited through his chest, according to information collected by DCIP. He was transferred to Ramallah Hospital in a private car where he was pronounced dead soon after arrival.
“Israeli forces’ impunity is on full display as Palestinian children continue to be targets and the international community has nothing to offer other than empty words,” said Ayed Abu Eqtaish, accountability program director at DCIP. “Palestinian children will continue to be targeted. They will continue to be unlawfully killed with impunity without actual justice and accountability.”
Odeh was walking to an area known as Waar Al-Bata, located about 100 meters away from his home where he and friends would sit. Palestinians in the area heard the gunshots and went to the area to help Odeh, but Israeli forces fired on them, according to information collected by DCIP. After about 20 minutes, they were able to reach Odeh and transport him to a medical center in the nearby village of Ni’lin.
There was no ambulance or doctor on duty at the medical center so they headed toward Ramallah Hospital.
About halfway to Ramallah, they met an ambulance that then rushed him to hospital. Odeh lost consciousness while in the car and doctors failed to resuscitate him upon arrival at Ramallah Hospital.
Under international law, intentional lethal force is only justified in circumstances where a direct threat to life or of serious injury is present. However, investigations and evidence collected by DCIP regularly suggest that Israeli forces use lethal force against Palestinian children in circumstances that may amount to extrajudicial or wilful killings.
Odeh is the 14th Palestinian child shot and killed by Israeli forces in 2022, according to documentation collected by DCIP.
In May, Israeli forces shot and killed 14-year-old Zaid Mohammad Said Ghunaim on May 27 in the occupied West Bank town of Al-Khader, located southwest of Bethlehem. Israeli forces shot and killed 16-year-old Ghaith Mohammad Rafiq Ziad Yamin around 1:30 a.m. on May 25 near Qabr Yusuf (Jacob’s Tomb) east of the occupied West Bank city of Nablus. Amjad Walid Hussein Fayed, 16, was shot with live ammunition in the chest by Israeli forces around 2:30 a.m. on May 21 in the occupied West Bank city of Jenin. Israeli forces shot and killed Thaer Khalil Mohammad Maslat, 16, with live ammunition on May 11 in the occupied West Bank city of Al-Bireh shortly after he left school. On May 8, Israeli forces shot and killed 17-year-old Motasem Mohammad Taleb Atallah inside the Jewish-only Tekoa settlement located near Bethlehem after he entered the settlement possessing a knife.
Shawkat Kamal Shawkat Abed, 17, succumbed to his injuries on April 15 after Israeli forces shot him in the abdomen near Jenin. Israeli forces shot and killed Qusai Fuad Mohammad Hamamra, 16, in Husan, near Bethlehem on April 13. Mohammad Hussein Mohammad Qassim succumbed to his wounds on April 11, a day after Israeli forces shot him in Jenin. Israeli forces shot and killed Sanad Mohammad Khalil Abu Atiya on March 31 in Jenin as he approached a wounded man in an attempt to render aid. Nader Haitham Fathi Rayyan, 16, was killed by Israeli forces outside the entrance of Balata refugee camp located southeast of Nablus on March 15.
Israeli forces shot and killed Yamen Nafez Mahmoud Khanafseh in Abu Dis, east of Jerusalem on March 6. Israeli forces shot and killed 13-year-old Mohammad Rezq Shehadeh Salah on February 22 in Al-Khader, southwest of Bethlehem. An Israeli sniper shot and killed 16-year-old Mohammad Akram Ali Taher Abu Salah with live ammunition on February 13 while Israeli forces deployed in the village of Silat Al-Harithiya near Jenin in the northern occupied West Bank, according to documentation collected by DCIP.
2021 was the deadliest year for Palestinian children since 2014. Israeli forces and armed civilians killed 78 Palestinian children, according to evidence collected by DCIP.