RAMALLAH, West Bank, Palestinian territories - Israeli soldiers have shot dead a 13-year-old Palestinian boy on Friday who was throwing stones at a protest in the occupied West Bank, according to Palestinian officials.
The teenager was hit by a live bullet in his stomach in his village of al-Mughayir, northeast of Ramallah, and was rushed to a hospital in Ramallah where he later died, the Palestinian Health Ministry was quoted as saying by the Reuters Thomson news agency.
An Israeli military spokeswoman said soldiers had used what she described as "riot dispersal means," including the firing of rubber bullets, to confront dozens of Palestinians who were hurling stones at them and trying to roll rocks and burning tires at Israeli vehicles.
"The reports of live-fire use during the riot are not true, and claims about a number of rioters injured and one killed are known," she said.
The Palestinian Red Cross named the victim of the shooting as Ali Abu Aliya:
'He had been participating in a protest against a new settlement outpost in the area. Other demonstrators reported that clashes broke out between the Israeli army and Palestinians, even though they were far from the outpost,' the Israeli-based Haaretz newspaper reported.
'The mayor of al-Mughayir told Palestinian state news that Abu Aliya was shot by an Israeli soldier during clashes at the eastern entrance of the village. He added that four other young people were wounded by rubber bullet fire and treated at the scene," the Haaretz report added.
Local residents have been holding weekly protests against the outpost for three weeks close to the neighboring village of Kafr Malik, resident Mohammad Abu Aliya, a relative of the boy, told The Times of Israel.
"This crime shows the ugliness of the occupation against the defenseless Palestinian people. It is the latest in a daily series of killings that cannot be tolerated," Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas said in a statement published on Friday.
"This ugly crime is a war crime and a crime against humanity," the Palestinian Foreign Ministry said in a statement also released on Friday.
The UN Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process Nickolay Mladenov called for an investigation.
"Appalled by the killing of a 13 year old Palestinian boy, Ali Abu Alaya, near Ramallah today. Israel must swiftly and independently investigate this shocking and unacceptable incident. Children enjoy special protection under international law and must be protected from violence," the envoy posted on Twitter.