Seven Palestinians Reported Shot; One Electrocuted
JERUSALEM (AP) _ Israeli troops shot and wounded seven Palestinians today, and a Palestinian was electrocuted when soldiers ordered him to remove a Palestinian flag from an electricity pole, Arab reports said.
The army denied its soldiers were involved in Wednesday night’s electrocution. It said it was checking the injury reports.
It was the second straight day of a general strike called by Arabs to mark the 15-month anniversary of the uprising in the West Bank and Gaza Strip.
The head of Israel’s military government in the West Bank, Brig. Gen. Shaike Erez, met two hours with 25 prominent Palestinians in Nablus and asked them how the uprising, known by the Arabic word ″intefadeh,″ could be ended.
″I told him this is the generation of the occupation who rose up against Israel, and the intefadeh will never be ended until an international peace conference is convened in which the PLO is a partner on equal footing,″ Dr. Hatem Abu-Ghazaleh, a physician and author who attended the meeting, told The Associated Press. Israel refuses to negotiate with the PLO, saying it is a terrorist organization.
The meeting came after troops lifted a curfew that had been imposed on the city of Nablus since Feb. 24, when an Israeli soldier was killed by a cement block dropped on his head.
Troops shot and wounded seven Palestinians, including a 15-year-old boy, in the West Bank, Arab hospital officials said. Arab reports also said two Nablus men suffered serious head injuries after being beaten by troops.
On Wednesday night, 27-year-old Ibrahim Haled Hubal was electrocuted in the West Bank village of Kharbat Al-Masbah, Arab reports said. The reports said Hubal was killed after troops ordered him to climb an electricity pole to remove a Palestinian flag. Palestinian flags are outlawed in Israel.
An army official said no troops were in the village at the time and that Hubal may have climbed the pole to hang a flag.
His death brought to 392 the number of Palestinians killed in the uprising. Seventeen Israelis have died.
The report of the electrocution came two days after the army issued orders prohibiting soldiers from sending Arabs up electric poles to retrieve Palestinian flags. Several Palestinians have been electrocuted this way since the start of the uprising in December 1987.