TEL AVIV (May. 16)
New disturbances flared on the West Bank over the weekend and a strike by Arab merchants in East Jerusalem was thwarted by Israeli security forces. A 17-year-old Arab girl, Lina Nabulsi, was fatally wounded today during a clash between Israeli soldiers and rioting students in Nablus and two Arab youths were wounded during a subsequent demonstration over the girl’s death.
Two opposing versions of the Nablus shooting were given. Israeli soldiers said they fired into the air to disperse rioters and that the girl was accidentally hit by a ricochetting bullet. Local Arabs insisted that the girl was shot point blank by soldiers who pursued her into an apartment building where she died in the flat of a friend.
Mayor Bassam Al-Shaqa of Nablus and the local town council reportedly sent a cable to United Nations Secretary General Kurt Waldheim urging him to send a committee of inquiry to the West Bank to investigate the Israeli occupation.
INVESTIGATION OF SHOOTING ORDERED
Military authorities ordered an investigation of the shooting. The girl, the daughter of a prominent Nablus merchant, was reportedly not involved in the disturbances. The Military Governor visited Nablus to offer his personal condolences to her family.
One Arab was wounded in the leg by Israeli soldiers during disturbances yesterday in Jenin. A curfew was imposed on the town. Arab students erected roadblocks and burned piles of rubber tires in many parts of the West Bank yesterday. Israeli soldiers and re-enforced border police removed the obstacles.
The latest eruptions of unrest on the West Bank and East Jerusalem were apparently occasioned by the 28th anniversary of Israel’s independence which occurred on May 15, according to the Gregorian calendar. Merchants in Nablus and East Jerusalem closed their shops. Security forces ordered them re-opened and warned that they would break the locks. Within a short time, the shops were opened by their owners. But East Jerusalem and West Bank schools were closed as students boycotted classes.
An explosive charge detonated today in an empty bus that had just brought Arab laborers from Kalkilya to Kfar Saba. The vehicle was damaged but no casualties were reported. About 70 Kalkilya workers were detained for questioning. Arab villagers in Galilee held memorial meetings Friday for six Arabs killed there in clashes with Israeli troops last March 30. Anti-Israel speeches were delivered but the meetings were orderly.