27-year-old Ahmad Erakat was on his way from Abu Dis town, Jerusalem, to pick up his sister and his mother from a hair salon in Bethlehem, on his sister’s wedding day. Because he was in a rush, he lost control of his vehicle near the “Container” Israeli checkpoint in Wadi El-Nar area, AKA “Valley of Fire”, and was immediately shot dead by soldiers.
According to witnesses who were behind his vehicle, which he rented for the wedding, Israeli soldiers shot Ahmed multiple times, and left him to bleed on the ground for 1.5 hours. After that, they prevented anyone from approaching him to help.
According to the family, his father reached the checkpoint and saw his son on the floor writhing. He begged the soldiers to let him help his son, but in vain.
Even though this is a common practice by the Israeli army, this story in particular hit hard among the Palestinian community for many reasons.
The main one being that the family’s wedding turned into a funeral. The chairs that they laid out for the wedding taken for the condolence ceremony.
Soon to be groom
Ahmad himself was set to get married next month. His wedding was scheduled on 29 May but was postponed due to the spread of COVID-19.
Ahmed’s fiance spoke about their house and wedding preparations from A to Z. They both had bought the Furniture, dresses and home accessories.
“Ahmed is gone. His dreams are gone with him. He never wanted to go to our house without us being together. He even took the house keys with him,” his fiance, traumatized, says, as their dream was shredded by the occupation.
Ahmed Erekat is the nephew of senior Palestinian official Saeb Erekat, secretary general of the Palestine Liberation Organization, and cousin of Palestinian American legal scholar Noura Erakat.
Ahmed Erekat, 27, beautiful young man. A son. A brother. Fiancée. My baby cousin. Israeli cowards shot him multiple times, left him to bleed for 1.5 hours and blamed him for his death. Tonight was his sister’s wedding, his was next month. We failed to protect him. I am so sorry. pic.twitter.com/3E341iE7sM
— Noura Erakat (@4noura) June 23, 2020
In an interview with Democracy Now’s Amy Goodman, Noura Erekat explained how such practices by the Israeli soldiers, who were fully armed at this checkpoint, are behind barriers, have become so normalized.
“I want to just bring up something before I address Israel’s vicious, dangerous and disgusting allegations that this was a car ramming, and raise three questions for the audience that’s paying attention right now,” Erekat said.
“One, why is Abu Dis, where Ahmed and my family is from, so severely underdeveloped that he has to travel outside to one of the big Palestinian cities in order to get his sisters from a hair salon? What is the cause of that underdevelopment?
“Number two, I want to ask the audience to think about the biggest Palestinian city and commercial center to Abu Dis is Jerusalem. Abu Dis is a suburb of Jerusalem and has been cut off from it by the apartheid wall. Why can’t Palestinians, why couldn’t my family get to Jerusalem, and instead have to travel to Bethlehem?
“And number three, and so importantly, why is there a checkpoint between Bethlehem and Abu Dis, two Palestinian cities? Why are there checkpoints anywhere? Just think about those questions as we answer this broader question of the context that Ahmed was killed in.”
Following his execution, Israeli Occupation Authorities detained Ahmed’s body, a policy Israel uses against Palestinians it accuses of car-ramming attempts.
With Ahmed, the number of martyrs detained by IOA since the return of the occupation to the detention policy in 2015 is raised to 63, in addition to 253 bodies in the number cemeteries.
استشهاد شاب من أبو ديس برصاص الاحتلال على حاجز "الكونتينر" القدس 23-6-2020 وفا- أعلن مساء اليوم الثلاثاء عن استشهاد الشاب أحمد مصطفى عريقات (28 عاما) من بلدة ابو ديس بالقدس المحتلة، برصاص قوات الاحتلال الإسرائيلي قرب حاجز "الكونتينر" شمال شرق بيت لحم.وقال رئيس بلدية أبو ديس أحمد أبو هلال، لـ"وفا"، إن جنود الاحتلال أطلقوا الرصاص صوب الشاب عريقات، وتركوه ينزف حتى استشهد، مضيفا انه تم احتجاز الجثمان.وأكد أن الشاب عريقات كان في طريقه لإحضار شقيقته من صالون في بيت لحم، حيث كان من المقرر أن تتم مراسم زفافها اليوم.وكان جنود الاحتلال المتمركزون على الحاجز أوقفوا المركبة التي يستقلها الشاب عريقات، وأطلقوا الرصاص عليه ومنعوا طاقم الهلال الأحمر من تقديم الإسعافات له، كما أطلقوا قنابل الغاز المسيل للدموع، وأغلقوا الحاجز، ومنعوا مركبات المواطنين من المرور، ما تسبب بأزمة خانقة.استشهاد الشاب أحمد عريقات برصاص الاحتلال على حاجز "الكونتينر " شمال شرق بيت لحم
Publiée par وكالة وفا – WAFA News Agency sur Mardi 23 juin 2020