An Israeli army reserve officer was shot dead by Palestinian police after driving through a roadblock in the Gaza Strip.
The incident took place Saturday, when Lt. Col. Emmanuel Maloul, 48, sped through a Palestinian roadblock after crashing through three others, one of them set up by the Israel Defense Force.
Israeli and Palestinian police officials said they believed that Maloul had wanted to commit suicide.
Israeli security sources said the Palestinian police at the roadblock near Beit Hanoun had opened fire only after they thought that they were going to be run over.
“They did not have any choice,” an army source was quoted as saying by the Israeli daily Ha’aretz.
Maloul was hit in the chest by gunfire and taken to Shifa Hospital in Gaza City. His body was later handed over to Israeli authorities.
Maloul, a resident of Kiryat Ono, last served as commander of a unit of trackers in southern Israel.
In recent years, he had become ill with cancer, suffered partial paralysis and undergone 13 operations, the most recent one less than two weeks earlier at Ichilov Hospital in Tel Aviv.
Maloul had served for a lengthy period in Gaza, his brother said.
“I don’t understand why he drove there in particular,” the brother was quoted as saying.
Maloul is survived by a wife and four children.
Maloul’s widow told police that he had wanted to commit suicide, Israeli and Palestinian police officials said.