Ramallah, December 17, 2023—Israeli forces shot and killed a 16-year-old Palestinian boy in the central occupied West Bank last night.
Atallah Ziyad Atallah Badaha, 16, was shot in the chest by Israeli forces around 10 p.m. in the Palestinian town of Deir Ammar, northwest of Ramallah in the central occupied West Bank, according to documentation collected by Defense for Children International - Palestine. Atallah was standing in front of his house watching confrontations between Israeli forces and Palestinian youth when he was shot from a distance of about 150 meters (492 feet) away. Atallah was first brought to a local health center before an ambulance transported him to the Palestine Medical Complex in Ramallah, where he was pronounced dead around 11 p.m.
“Israeli forces are shouting to the world through their actions that Palestinian children are undoubtedly targets,” said Ayed Abu Eqtaish, accountability program director at DCIP. “The international communities’ complete failure to act in any meaningful way to protect Palestinian children does nothing more than empower Israeli forces to increasingly target Palestinian children across the Occupied Palestinian Territory.”
Israeli forces carried out a military incursion first into Deir Ammar refugee camp then the town.
74 Palestinian children have been killed in the occupied West Bank since October 7, according to documentation collected by DCIP, when the Israeli military began a full-scale military offensive on the Gaza Strip dubbed Operation Iron Swords.
So far this year, Israeli forces and settlers have killed at least 114 Palestinian children in the occupied West Bank, according to documentation collected by DCIP. Israeli forces and settlers shot and killed 97 Palestinian children with live ammunition, 12 Palestinian children were killed in drone strikes, four Palestinian children were killed by missiles fired from a U.S.-sourced Apache attack helicopter, and one child was killed in an Israeli warplane airstrike.
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.