Israeli forces kill child with bullets in the back

By Tamara Nassar
6 May 2021

Israeli occupation forces shot and killed a Palestinian child on Wednesday.

Said Yousef Muhammad Odeh was from the village of Odala near Nablus in the occupied West Bank.

The 16-year-old is the second Palestinian child Israel has killed this year.

Odeh was walking towards the village’s entrance on Wednesday night when occupation forces stationed in an olive grove shot him, according to an investigation by Defense for Children International Palestine.

The Israeli army claimed firebombs had been hurled at them and that “troops operated to stop the suspects by firing toward them,” according to the Associated Press.But DCIP found Odeh had not been involved in any confrontations between occupation forces and villagers when he was shot.

Odeh was hit with live bullets in the back, near his right shoulder and in the pelvis area, with both bullets exiting from the front of his body, according to DCIP.

Occupation forces then reportedly shot another youth in the back who tried to reach Odeh to render aid.

Israeli soldiers blocked an ambulance from reaching Odeh for 15 minutes.

When medics were finally able to reach him, he had no signs of life. Odeh was taken to Rafidia hospital in Nablus, where he was pronounced dead.

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Said Odeh was a promising player with the Balata Youth Center football team.

The center posted several tributes to him on Facebook tagged with his jersey number, 22.

The club also asked Palestinian fans to post images of Odeh on the Facebook page of football governing body FIFA.

Palestinians have long demanded that FIFA sanction the Israel Football Association because of its inclusion of Israeli teams based in West Bank settlements and Israel’s attacks on Palestinian athletes.

The Israeli military said its activity in Odala happened during its search for the suspected perpetrator of a shooting at the Tapuach junction checkpoint near Nablus on Sunday.

Three Israelis, all 19 years old, were injured in the shooting.

One of the three, Yehuda Guetta died from his wounds on Wednesday night.

Israeli forces arrested suspected assailant Muntasir Shalabi on Wednesday. Israeli media claimed that Shalabi is a US citizen who recently returned to Palestine after several years in the United States.

Ali Abunimah contributed reporting.

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