Ramallah, September 22, 2023—Israeli forces shot and killed a 16-year-old Palestinian boy early this morning in the northern occupied West Bank after he fired on Israeli forces deployed nearby.
Abdullah Imad Sa’d Abu Hasan, 16, was shot with live ammunition by an Israeli military sniper around 3 a.m. on September 22 as Israeli forces deployed in the Palestinian village of Kafr Dan, located west of Jenin, in the northern occupied West Bank, according to documentation collected by Defense for Children International - Palestine. He sustained a gunshot wound to the abdomen and the bullet exited through his back. Abdullah rolled and crawled injured for about 20 meters (65 feet) before he was transported in a civilian vehicle and then transferred to a Palestinian ambulance. He arrived at Ibn Sina Hospital in Jenin and was declared dead upon arrival.
Israeli forces carried out an incursion into the Palestinian village of Kafr Dan around 2 a.m., raiding a house located on the southwestern side of the village. Abdullah arrived nearby carrying a weapon and began shooting from a distance of 400 meters (1,300 feet) at the Israeli military vehicles deployed in the area, according to information collected by DCIP. While Abdullah was shooting at Israeli forces, an Israeli sniper stationed in a house under construction about 700 meters (2,300 feet) away targeted him with a single bullet.
“Palestinian children live in a hyper-militarized context where the Israeli military's nighttime and early morning incursions into Palestinian communities to arrest and intimidate Palestinian civilians is the norm,” said Ayed Abu Eqtaish, accountability program director at DCIP. “Israeli forces systematically disregard obligations and international norms concerning the right to life because they enjoy near complete impunity for war crimes.”
About two months ago, Abdullah received a phone call from an Israeli intelligence officer urging him to surrender himself and threatened to kill him if he did not, according to Abdullah’s father.
47 Palestinian children have been killed in 2023, according to documentation collected by DCIP. Israeli forces and settlers have shot and killed at least 39 Palestinian children and killed one Palestinian child with a targeted drone strike in the occupied West Bank. Six Palestinian children in Gaza were killed in the May 2023 Israeli military offensive on the Gaza Strip, and a 10-year-old Palestinian child in Gaza succumbed to head wounds he sustained during the Israeli military offensive on the Gaza Strip in August 2022.
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.
53 Palestinian children were killed in 2022, according to documentation collected by DCIP, including 36 Palestinian children shot and killed by Israeli forces or settlers in the occupied West Bank. DCIP documented the killing of 17 Palestinian children between August 5–7 after Israeli forces launched a military offensive in the Gaza Strip.