Israeli forces killed more than 100 people, including 33 children, in 2016, marking the highest numbers of deaths in Palestine in a decade.
More than 111 Palestinian were killed in 2016, almost all of them at the hands of Israeli forces, according to a tally by the Palestinian Ma’an news agency which also reported that the past year has been the deadliest for Palestinian children in more than a decade.
Since October 2015, the occupied West Bank has seen a surge in violence as part of a repressive Israeli crackdown on Palestinian protests against the Israeli occupation and a wave of stabbing attacks on Israeli soldiers and settlers by lone Palestinian attackers.
Since the outbreak of the violence in 2015, more than 246 Palestinians have been killed, according to Ma’an, which also found that at least 135 lost their lives between October and December of 2015 alone.
Most of those Palestinians killed, 97 percent, were shot and killed by Israeli occupation forces and police, the agency said. However, less than half of Palestinian victims were killed by Israeli forces as they carried or at least attempted stabbing attacks. The rest lost their lives during clashes and protests in the West Bank.
Israel has been criticized by several human rights bodies and even the United Nations for its systematic extrajudicial killings of alleged attackers, who only had knives for weapons and whose threat could have been neutralized without using deadly force.
“Drawing from statistics, a general portrait emerges of the average Palestinian to have died during this time: a young man in his late teens or early twenties from the West Bank district of Hebron, killed by Israeli security forces,” Ma’an’s report said of the findings and added that out of all Palestinians killed, 34, or 30.6 percent, were from the Hebron district.
The vast majority of Palestinians deaths were men and boys 99 out of the 111 dead being male. Meanwhile, 12 Palestinian women and girls were killed at the hands of Israeli forces.
Most of the deaths took place in the West Bank while seven people, including two children, were killed in Gaza by Israeli airstrikes.
While 12 Palestinian women and girls were killed — 10 of whom while allegedly or actually carrying out attacks — the vast majority killed were Palestinian men and boys. Of the 111 Palestinians killed, 99 were male.
Also, 2016 was the deadliest for Palestinian children in the occupied West Bank in a decade, as at least 33 were killed by Israeli fire, according to a recent report from Defense for Children International Palestine.
The group said 81 Palestinian children were injured in 2016, “the vast majority of which were at the hands of Israeli forces,” adding that in several cases of child injuries and fatalities, Israeli forces prevented paramedics from approaching and treating children suffering from gunshot wounds.