Search JTA's historical archive dating back to 1923

Israel Probes Two Arab Deaths; Scattered Violence Continues

February 10, 1988
See Original Daily Bulletin From This Date

Sporadic violence continued Tuesday in the West Bank, East Jerusalem and the Gaza Strip as police investigated the deaths of two Arab youths whose bodies were found in the West Bank during the past 24 hours.

The circumstances of death were unclear in both cases. Palestinian sources claimed that Nabil Lateef Mahmoud Abu Khalil was shot to death by Israel Defense Force soldiers in Attil village near Tulkarm.

Jewish settlers are suspected in the fatal shooting of teenager Iyad Mohammed Aqel in Kadum village Monday. The settlers, from Kedumim in the Samaria district, reportedly claimed they were driving to Kadum to pick up Arab workers when, confronted by rock-throwers, they shot in self-defense.

Another Palestinian youth, Khader Tarazi from Gaza, died at Soroka Hospital in Beersheba on Tuesday of injuries believed to be the result of a beating by IDF soldiers.

Although news of his death triggered outbursts in the Gaza Strip and West Bank, the territories were relatively quiet Tuesday. Curfews remained in force in Nablus and Kalkilya and at several refugee camps.

The main trouble spot was East Jerusalem, where police arrested 21 Arab youths on suspicion of rock-throwing. A Jewish home in the Moslem Quarter of the Old City was pelted with rocks Tuesday. It is near the flat recently purchased by Minister of Commerce and Industry Ariel Sharon.

In addition, a tourist bus was hit by rocks near the Dung Gate entrance to the Old City. There were no injuries.

A curfew at Kalkilya, an Arab city near the old “green line,” not far from the Israeli town of Kfar Saba, was imposed after riots broke out Monday night. Thousands of residents poured into the streets after unidentified men announced over a mosque’s public address system that Jewish settlers had invaded the town. Troops used tear gas and rubber bullets to disperse the crowd.

Kalkilya was the scene of a rampage by Jewish settlers last April after a settler’s car was fire-bombed on a nearby road, killing Ofra Moses and her 5-year-old son Tal.

Warnings that settlers were coming also brought thousands of residents of Halhoul, near Hebron, into the streets Monday night. The rumor apparently began after a stone-throwing match between Arab youths and settlers whose bus had been stopped outside the town.

Security sources believe warnings of an invasion by settlers is a new tactic used by Palestinian activists to stir riots in Arab population centers. Two cases of Jewish vigilantism have been confirmed — one in the town of Anabta two weeks ago and the other in Hebron last weekend, where 50 Arab-owned cars were vandalized.

A curfew remained in force Tuesday in the Arab village of Anat, which lies within the Jerusalem municipality. Residents were allowed out of their homes for several hours to buy food. Twelve Molotov cocktails were reportedly found in the town Monday and two residents were arrested.

Recommended from JTA