Killing Palestinian Teen is War Crime, says Government

RAMALLAH, November 22, 2015 (WAFA) – The Palestinian government Sunday described running over and subsequently killing a 16-year-old Palestinian schoolgirl as a “brutal war crime against humanity and childhood”.

In a press release, the government said Israel has disregarded all international laws and agreements, which guarantee the rights of Palestinian children.

“[Israel] has mastered the art of distorting the truth to mask its crimes by accusing every [Palestinian] victim of plotting a stabbing attack and planting a knife next to the body to support its allegations.”

The government stressed that 16-year-old Ashraqat Qatannani is “a victim to Israel’s terrorism”. Qatannani was run over by head of Nablus settlements in the northern West Bank at Huwwara checkpoint south of the city; she was shot afterward by an Israeli soldier under claims that she planned to carry out a stabbing attack.

The Palestinian government called on the international community to speak against Israel’s crimes and put an end to its recurrent violations of international law and treaties, including but not limited; arbitrary arrests, detaining children and withholding the bodies of Palestinians who were killed in the recent tensions, raiding hospitals and schools and storming al-Aqsa Mosque compound, shutting down entrances of cities, villages and residential neighborhoods and finally blocking main roads between cities with roadblocks and checkpoints.

Meanwhile, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs condemned killing Qatannani and a taxi driver near Jericho who was identified as Sahdi Khasib.

The ministry’s press release said, “This phenomenon has become clear to everyone; any settler has to only shout the word ‘terrorist’ before Israeli soldiers open fire immediately at any Palestinian without investigating the accuracy of settlers’ allegations.”

“Every time, the same kind of knife is placed next to the body of killed Palestinians; as if every Palestinian who attempts to stab an Israeli buys or has the same knife.”

The ministry affirmed it will intensify efforts to highlight this ‘radical phenomenon’ and expose the deception behind it.