Witnesses to an alleged stab attempt on Israeli border police at a military checkpoint in the occupied West Bank Wednesday said two siblings shot dead during the incident posed no threat at the time the Israeli officer killed them.
Witnesses told Ma’an that 23-year-old Maram Salih Hassan Abu Ismail, five months pregnant, and her 16-year-old brother Ibrahim were en route to Jerusalem when they took a path intended for vehicles, not pedestrians, into Qalandiya checkpoint near Ramallah. The two were apparently unable to understand Israeli officers yelling in Hebrew, and stopped walking.
Witnesses said it appeared that Ibrahim attempted to grab his sister's hand and move away from the officers, when they opened fire on her. Maram fell to the ground and when Ibrahim attempted to aid her, he was shot in his tracks.
A Palestinian bus driver present at the scene, Muhammad Ahmad, told Ma’an that the Israeli officer who opened fire on Maram was standing behind a cement block some 20 meters away from her at the time. The driver said it did not appear that Maram or her brother posed any threat when the officer shot them.
Palestinian local and witness to the incident Ahmad Taha told Ma’an that Israeli officers approached the two after they had been shot and had fallen to the ground before opening fire on them again “to ensure that they were dead,” adding that the officers “could have moved the two away without opening fire.”