Relatives of Palestinian demonstrator Mustafa Tamimi mourn during his funeral in the West Bank village of Al Nabi Saleh near Ramallah yesterday. Tamimi, who sustained a head injury during a Friday protest against an Israeli barrier, died of his wounds on Saturday. Image Credit: Reuters

Ramallah: The family of Mustafa Tamimi will sue the Israeli army following the death of the 27-year-old who was struck in the head by a tear gas canister by a soldier on Friday during a peaceful demonstration against Israeli colonial activities in the West Bank village of Al Nabi Saleh.

Wrapped in a Palestinian flag, Mustafa's body was moved from the Palestine Medical Complex in Ramallah to Al Nabi Saleh where thousands took part in the funeral.

After Mustafa was hit with the canister, he was taken to Belinson Hospital in Israel, where he succumbed to his injuries. His body was later taken to Ramallah for burial.


Speaking to Gulf News, Mohammad Tamimi, a representative of the family and a member of the Popular Resistance Committee in Al Nabi Saleh, said Mustafa's killing would not go unpunished.

"Once the family and committee are done with the funeral rituals and condolence sessions, we will approach the Red Cross, the human rights organisations and international legal institutions to join forces and will sue the Israeli forces for the premeditated murder of Mustafa," he said.

"The Israeli forces targeted Mustafa from less than 10 metres," he said, stressing that the only aim of the forces was to murder the activist.

Tamimi said the family has the number of the vehicle from which the canister was hurled, along with pictures and tens of witnesses of Palestinian demonstrators and international supporters who are ready to testify in the case. Commenting on an internal investigation launched by the Israeli military forces to investigate the circumstances of Mustafa's death, Tamimi said, "We do not pay any attention to their investigations. We do not believe in their unfair and biased investigations.

Village sealed

"If the killers are not indicted and punished for the murder at the Israeli courts, we will not hesitate to chase Mustafa's killers in international courts," he said.

"Mustafa's martyrdom will not scare us and put an end to Al Nabi Saleh weekly demonstrations; on the contrary, the absence of Mustafa is going to motivate us all to continue and intensify our demonstrations," he said.

After Mustafa's funeral, Israeli forces sealed the village of Al Nabi Saleh and declared it a military zone, banning entry to the village. Several speeches were delivered during the funeral, after which the mourners proceeded to the Israeli military tower in the village where clashes erupted once again.

Father, daughter hurt

A Palestinian father and his daughter were wounded in an Israeli air strike on Gaza City early yesterday, Palestinian medics said.

The two were hurt when their home was hit in a raid that apparently targeted a neighbouring building in the Zeitoun neighbourhood.

The strike followed days of rising tensions between Gaza-based fighters and the Jewish state, with groups in the coastal territory lobbing a barrage of rockets into southern Israel and the Israeli military launching a series of air raids.

In a statement, the Israeli military confirmed the air strike which it said "targeted a weapon manufacturing site in the northern Gaza Strip".

"Direct hits were confirmed and secondary explosions were identified," the statement added. "The site was targeted in response to the ongoing rocket fire from the Gaza Strip."

The Israeli military said 19 rockets had been fired into Israel since Thursday, when Israel carried out an air strike targeting two fighters it said were planning to attack Israeli soldiers and civilians. Both men were killed in the strike, which injured several others.

— With inputs from AFP