An Israeli soldier has been caught on camera shooting tear gas into a Palestinian school in the occupied West Bank city of al-Khalil (Hebron) during school hours, amid denials by Israel’s military of such attacks.
The video, obtained by Israel’s Haaretz newspaper on Thursday, show an Israeli soldier throwing a canister into the school’s yard, followed by tear gas rising from it.
Palestinians have reported that the occupation forces shoot tear gas and stun grenades into schools on several occasions, but the Israeli military denies such incidents.
Last week, Palestinians reported to Breaking the Silence -- an anti-occupation Israeli NGO that collects reports about abuses by the regime soldiers in the Palestinian territories -- an increase in the scope of tear gas launched at al-Khalil schools, including primary schools.
In response to a query posed by Haaretz to the Israeli military last week, the army spokesperson claimed the military does not launch stun grenades or tear gas into schools.
However, the video, which was taken on November 18 outside the al-Khalil School for Boys, countered the Israeli official’s claim.
Moreover, teachers told Haaretz that Israeli troops throw canisters at the school on a daily basis.
The school’s manager keeps a box with dozens of used grenades and canisters, which he says were thrown at the school over the past couple of months, according to Haaretz.
The daily also said that dozens of photographs on display in the school document student arrests and incidents of tear gas canisters thrown at the school since 2015.
Following Haaretz’s query and the recent video, the Israeli army spokesperson was forced to confirm the incident, but said it is unusual and will be looked into.
Ron Zaidel, director of research for Breaking the Silence, said “while thousands of Palestinian students are suffocating from tear gas,” the Israeli military spokesperson “is trying to put up a smoke screen to hide the reality on the ground from the public.”
Zaidel said the thousands of testimonies collected by the group over the years “clearly show that violence against children is an unavoidable part of the military dictatorship ruling a civilian population.”
This article has been adapted from its original source.
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