Israeli forces kill Palestinian in West Bank: Palestinian ministry

Israeli forces killed a Palestinian man Thursday in the occupied West Bank, the Palestinian health ministry said, as the army claimed rocks were thrown at Israeli forces during a raid.

The 41-year-old killed was named as Samir Aouni Harbi Aslan by the ministry, which said he was hit in the chest "by a bullet of the Israeli occupation army" in Qalandia refugee camp, near Ramallah.

The Israeli military said troops had fired on people who "hurled rocks and blocks from the rooftops aiming at soldiers operating beneath".

Eighteen people were arrested in overnight raids across the West Bank, the Palestinian Prisoners' Club advocacy group said.

Azzam Abdel Qader, who witnessed the raid, said Aslan was shot on the balcony of his home as his son was being detained.

"He shouted at the soldiers and said to his son: 'Don't be afraid'," Qader told AFP.

"After that, stones were being thrown at the occupation soldiers in the neighbourhood, so the soldiers started shooting randomly."

Mourners gathered in Qalandia for the funeral of Aslan, the third Palestinian killed in the West Bank in 24 hours and the seventh since the start of the year.

On Wednesday, an Israeli civilian shot dead a 19-year-old Palestinian who had knifed an Israeli near a settlement in the southern West Bank.

The incident followed Israeli troops killing a Palestinian militant in a firefight during an incursion by the forces into the northern city of Nablus.

His funeral on Thursday drew hundreds of mourners, who gathered in the city hours after another incursion by Israeli forces.

Two Palestinian journalists were among those wounded during the latest raid.

The military said Israeli forces shot at people when the troops came under fire while arresting a Palestinian.

A surge in bloodshed last year saw at least 26 Israelis and 200 Palestinians killed across Israel and the West Bank, according to an AFP tally.

More than 150 of the fatalities were in the West Bank.

After a series of attacks targeting Israelis last March and April, Israeli forces stepped up raids in the northern cities of Jenin and Nablus, bastions of armed Palestinian factions in the West Bank.

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