An Arab youth was shot and killed by Israeli border police near the West Bank town of Tulkarim yesterday, Israeli military sources said today. It was the second such fatal shooting in the occupied territory in the last five days.
The incident occurred after shots were fired at a civilian bus traveling through the area, the sources said, adding that no one on the bus was hurt, but in a search for the gunmen Israeli border police came upon four Arab youths they suspected of being involved. Military sources said three of the youths obeyed an order to halt but one ran and was shot. They identified him as Najiv Abu Shallah, age 16 or 17. Palestinian sources said the dead youth must have been innocent since his three companions were later released after an investigation determined that they were not involved.
The military confirmed that the three had been released and said two other men had been arrested in the case.
Last Friday, an 18-year-old was shot by border police during a clash in the West Bank city of Nablus. He died the next day. According to reports in the Israeli press, the shooting occurred after stones were thrown at a border police patrol in the city.
The shootings are the first to be reported in the West Bank in several weeks. Last spring the occupied territory erupted in major rioting after Israeli authorities removed the elected mayors of several cities for refusing to cooperate with the Israeli civil administration.
There were also a number of incidents earlier in the summer following the Israeli invasion of Lebanon. Israeli officials contend most of the trouble in the West Bank has been inspired by the Palestine Liberation Organization, and that its expulsion from Lebanon should produce a lessening of tension in the territory.
[Israel is ordering foreigners seeking to teach at universities in the occupied West Bank to sign a pledge not to "act or give any assistance to" the PLO, Associated Press reported. The new measure was seen as part of a continuing Israeli effort to stamp out the influence of the organization.]