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Thousands of Palestinians attend funeral of teenager killed by Israeli forces

Thousands of Palestinian mourners have attended the funeral of a 15-year-old Palestinian boy who was killed by Israeli forces in the town of al-Khader near the occupied West Bank city of Bethlehem.

According to the Palestinian Information Center on Saturday, the funeral procession headed from Beit Jala Hospital to the teen's home in al-Khader village and then to his final resting place in the al-Shohada (Martyrs) graveyard.

The Palestinian Islamic Resistance Movement, Hamas, strongly condemned the cold-blooded killing of Zaid Mohammad Ghoneim, stressing that Israel must be held accountable for its brutal crimes against Palestinian children.

Palestinian medical sources say Ghoneim was wounded by three bullets in the neck and the back, and succumbed to his wounds shortly after he was transferred to the al-Yamama Hospital in Bethlehem.

The Israeli military claimed that its forces responded with live fire when a number of suspects hurled rocks and petrol bombs at soldiers in the area, adding that the incident was under review.

However, the Palestinian Quds News Network cited local sources and eyewitnesses as saying that the teenager was killed by the Israeli forces in cold blood as he was surprised by their presence in the village and tried to hide in a parking garage.

Ghoneim is the third Palestinian teen to be killed by Israeli forces this week in the occupied territories, and fifth since the cold-blooded murder of Palestinian journalist Shireen Abu Akleh earlier this month.

He is also 13th Palestinian teen killed by Israeli forces since the beginning of the year, according to Defense for Children-Palestine (DCIP), an independent, local Palestinian child rights organization.

Ghuneim’s murder on Friday came hours after Israeli forces injured at least 90 people in protests in the occupied West Bank, the Palestine Red Crescent Society (PRCS) said.

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