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Autopsy reveals Palestinian minister was murdered

The death Palestinian Minister Ziad Abu Ein was the result of beating, teargas-induced asphyxiation and obstruction by the Israeli army to transfer him to a hospital on time, a Palestinian official said, citing official forensic results.

Palestinian Civil Affairs Minister Hassan Al-Sheikh, detailing the forensic results to the official Palestinian radio station today, asserted that the findings show that Abu Ein, who was fatally injured yesterday during an Israeli clampdown on a Palestinian protest against settlements and the Separation Wall near Ramallah, had been “murdered”.

“The forensic report is an essential piece of evidence of Israel’s responsibility [for Abu Ein’s death],” Al-Sheikh said following yesterday evening’s autopsy.

He added that the Palestinian authorities carried out the autopsy in an East Jerusalem university hospital after refusing to allow an Israeli medical centre to handle the procedure.

However, an Israeli doctor was present during the autopsy and he confirmed that the process was carried out “professionally”, Al-Sheikh explained.

Abu Ein, who was in charge of the Israeli settlements file at the Palestine Liberation Organisation (PLO), died yesterday after Israeli troops dispersed an anti-occupation demonstration in the northern West Bank town of Turmusiya.

A military funeral will be held for him this afternoon.

Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas has described the Israeli attack on Abu Ein as “barbaric” and declared a three-day mourning period.

The Israeli army said it is reviewing the circumstances of Abu Ein’s participation in the protest and his subsequent death.

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