Palestinians Say Minister Killed in Clash with IDF

A minister from the Palestinian Authority died following a confrontation with Israeli Defense Force soldiers during a Wednesday protest in the West Bank.

A medic and photographer who witnessed what took place were talking with authorities.

According to sources with the IDF, the military said that the minister’s death was due to suffering a heart attack.

Officials from the IDF said the initial reports were that no direct physical confrontation took place between the minister from the PA and the soldiers.

However, the IDF was still carrying out its complete investigation.

Further details were due to be released by the IDF on what took place during the protests by later evening, local time.

Ziad Abu Ein, a minister with the Palestinian Authority was rushed from the protest scene by ambulance but died while in route to Ramallah the city closest to Turmusiya where the protests were taking place.

However, Palestinian officials said the official from Fatah sustained injuries after a soldier with the IDF struck him on the chest with a helmet and due to the inhalation of the tear gas that had been fire close by, reported Ma’an the official news agency of the Palestinians.

Witnesses said that close to 100 Palestinian and foreign activists, who are part of a protest organization that is government run and headed by Abu Ein, were headed to protest and plant trees near an Israeli settlement at the time they were stopped at a makeshift checkpoint.

A group of approximately 15 soldiers from the IDF fired canisters of tear gas towards the protesters, which started a scuffle, said witnesses.

According to a photographer, Abu Ein was hit in the neck during the fighting and was then rushed to a hospital by ambulance shortly after the incident.

Mahmoud Abbas the Palestinian President said in a prepared statement that the death of Abu Ein was a barbaric act, which we will not accept or remain silent about.

National mourning for three days was announced by Abbas. He also noted he would take necessary steps following an investigation.

Shops were closed by Palestinians in protest across Ramallah and kids threw stones towards Israeli soldiers.

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