Israeli troops kill Palestinian who tried car-ramming in West Bank, police say

Israeli security forces cover the body of Palestinian Ahmad Erakat. PHOTO: AFP

JERUSALEM (REUTERS) - Israeli police on Tuesday (June 23) shot dead a Palestinian who they said had tried to run over an officer with his car in the occupied West Bank.

The officer was lightly injured in the incident, a police spokesman said. It took place at an Israeli military checkpoint near the town of Abu Dis, east of Jerusalem.

Palestinian officials questioned the police's account of the man's death. They identified him as 27-year-old Ahmad Erekat.

"This young man was killed in cold blood. Tonight was his sister's wedding," said Saeb Erekat, secretary-general of the Palestine Liberation Organisation. Erekat said the man killed was his relative and that his wedding was set for next week.

"What the occupation army (Israeli military) claims, that he was trying to run someone over, is a lie," he said.

Video showed Israeli troops placing a plastic sheet over the man, who lay shirtless on the ground next to his vehicle.

Tensions have risen in recent weeks with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's Cabinet due on July 1 to begin discussing annexation of the West Bank, territory Israel captured in a 1967 war and that Palestinians seek for a state.

Palestinians vehemently oppose the annexation plan, as do most world powers.

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