Israeli forces shot and wounded at least 2,617 Palestinians with live and rubber-coated steel bullets during the month of October, the Palestinian Red Cross reported on Sunday, November 8, as clashes continued into the month of November. A Red Crescent spokesperson told the Ma’an Palestinian news agency that at least 760 Palestinians were shot with live rounds of ammunition by Israel’s occupation forces in the West Bank and East Jerusalem, while another 1,857 were hit with rubber-coated steel bullets.
The spokesperson said that a further 5,399 Palestinians were treated for excessive inhalation of tear gas during the period, while another 246 were injured in other ways, including assault by Israeli soldiers and burns caused by fired tear gas canisters. The spokesperson said that these figures brought the total number of Palestinians wounded or injured during October to 8,262.
For most parts of the occupied Palestinian territory, October was also the deadliest month since the Second Intifada, with at least 69 Palestinians killed by Israeli forces. While 26 were shot dead during clashes, another 40 Palestinians were shot dead after allegations by Israel that they carried out or attempted attacks on Israelis. While Palestinians agree that a number of Palestinians were shot dead while carrying out attacks – ultimately claiming the lives of 10 Israelis – video footage and testimony of witnesses have raised serious doubts over the Israeli army’s version of the events in many of the other cases.
Moreover, Palestinian, Israeli and international rights groups have said that, in the majority of cases, Israeli forces needlessly killed their alleged attackers when they posed no imminent threat, a practice Israeli group B’Tselem refers to as “extrajudicial executions.” Amnesty International said last week that Israeli forces appeared “to have ripped up the rulebook and resorted to extreme and unlawful measures.” The UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Zeid Raad al-Hussein said: “The high number of casualties, in particular those resulting from the use of live ammunition by Israeli security forces, raises concerns of excessive use of force, and violations of the right to life and security.”