Israeli forces shoot, kill 17-year-old Palestinian boy near Hebron

Israeli forces shot and killed 17-year-old Osama Mahmoud Hasan Adawi on October 13. (Photo: Courtesy of the Adawi family)

Ramallah, October 13, 2022—Israeli forces shot and killed a 17-year-old Palestinian boy yesterday in the southern occupied West Bank.

Osama Mahmoud Hasan Adawi, 17, was shot by Israeli forces with live ammunition around 4:40 p.m. on October 12 at the southern entrance to Al-Arroub refugee camp near Hebron in the southern occupied West Bank, according to documentation collected by Defense for Children International – Palestine. Israeli forces shot Osama in the abdomen from a distance of about 70 meters (230 feet), causing severe bleeding. Osama was transferred by private car to a health center in nearby Beit Fajjar, then transferred by ambulance to the Arab Society Hospital in Beit Jala. Doctors attempted to resuscitate Osama but he succumbed to his wounds around 5:30 p.m.

“Israeli forces have shot and killed six Palestinian boys in the occupied West Bank since the beginning of October,” said Ayed Abu Eqtaish, accountability program director at DCIP. “No one has been held accountable. By routinely resorting to intentional lethal force in situations not justified under international law, Israeli forces have created an environment where no Palestinian child is safe.”

Israeli forces have intensified arrest operations and incursions into Palestinian cities in the occupied West Bank in recent months, leading to an increase in the number of Palestinian children killed by Israeli forces. Dozens of Palestinians have been killed in the West Bank since the Israeli military launched its Operation “Break the Wave” on March 31, 2022.

Under international law, intentional lethal force is only justified in circumstances where a direct threat to life or of serious injury is present. However, investigations and evidence collected by DCIP regularly suggest that Israeli forces use lethal force against Palestinian children in circumstances that may amount to extrajudicial or wilful killings. 

45 Palestinian children have been killed in 2022, according to documentation collected by DCIP, including 28 Palestinian children shot and killed by Israeli forces or settlers in the occupied West Bank. DCIP documented the killing of 17 Palestinian children between August 5–7 after Israeli forces launched a military offensive in the Gaza Strip. DCIP continues to investigate several incidents. 

2021 was the deadliest year for Palestinian children since 2014. Israeli forces and armed civilians killed 78 Palestinian children, according to evidence collected by DCIP.