Hundreds of Palestinians stormed a court in session in the West Bank town of Jenin on Tuesday morning, opened fire and killed three defendants, eyewitnesses said.
The mob then dragged the bodies into the street, firing in the air in joy. The third defendant was seriously injured and was taken away in an ambulance, reported AP. Later he died of his wounds.
The defendants were on trial in a Palestinian security court on suspicion they killed a member of their clan, an officer in the Preventive Security Service, four days earlier. The officer, Osama Kmeil, had killed several suspected collaborators with Israel during the Palestinians' first Intifada against Israel in the late 1980s and early 1990s.
The case was being heard Tuesday in Jenin's Chamber of Commerce, since all the Palestinian security buildings in the city had been bombed in previous Israeli air raids. A large contingent of police surrounded the building during the trial.
While the trial was in session, a large crowd gathered outside. At one point, someone yelled that the defendants had been sentenced to 15 years in prison, witnesses said. In response, some 350 persons attacked police guards, pushed them aside and charged into the third-floor courtroom.
There, armed persons in the crowd opened fire, killing the defendants. All three were also badly beaten with rifle butts, witnesses said. (Albawaba.com)
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