By Fayha Shalash – Ramallah

“The temperature of the metal was very high, and because my clothes were torn as a result of the torture and beatings, my entire back had deep burns and skin abrasions.” 

Mujahid Al-Abadi is 24 years old. He sells vegetables. 

On June 22, Israeli soldiers who invaded the northern West Bank city of Jenin and its adjacent refugee camp shot and wounded Al-Abadi and then tied him to the hood of a military vehicle. 

When the video was shared on social media, the shocking practice of abuse carried out against Palestinians by the Israeli army was revealed to the world.

The Palestine Chronicle spoke with Al-Abadi at the hospital where he is still receiving treatment, as he suffers from severe health complications.

Al-Abadi believed he miraculously survived the bloody abuse he was subjected to at the hands of the Israeli army. “I felt I was dying while I was still alive, and I was sure I would not see my family again,” he said.

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Shot, then Beaten 

It was an ordinary day, Al-Abadi told us. He had spent the night at his uncle’s house in the Jabriyat neighborhood the previous night – last Saturday. 

But in Jenin, nothing is ordinary.

When the news spread of a major Israeli incursion into the city, Al-Abadi decided to stay at his uncle’s house and not return to his home in the camp because he knew that Israeli occupation soldiers usually shoot anyone they encounter in the street.

Suddenly, military vehicles surrounded several houses in the neighborhood, including his uncle’s. After the soldiers called on everyone inside the house to go into the yard, they shot directly at Al-Abadi, wounding him in his leg and arm.

He remained lying on the ground, bleeding for half an hour while the soldiers prevented any ambulance from reaching him. 

Then the soldiers started beating him up, targeting the areas of his injuries. The bleeding got worse.

“They hit me hard where the bullets were. I was screaming in pain while they were laughing. The more I screamed, the more they hit me,” he said. “Then four soldiers picked me up and started swinging me in the air and cursing me with the worst insults.”

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‘Leave Me Alone’ 

Al-Abadi was hit repeatedly on his limbs, punched in the chest, and head. In addition to his injuries, he sustained fractures.

The Israeli soldiers did not even check his papers to determine his identity, he told the Palestine Chronicle. 

He kept screaming: “I did not do anything… Leave me alone!” They didn’t. 

As he groaned in pain, the soldiers picked him up and threw him to the ground. Then they picked him up again, threw him onto the hood of the military vehicle, and strapped him to it. 

The soldiers then drove the wounded man through the streets of the neighborhood.

“The temperature of the metal was very high, and because my clothes were torn as a result of the torture and beatings, my entire back had deep burns and skin abrasions,” Al-Abadi said.  

Still in a state of shock, he said the soldiers “continued to drive around for more than 20 minutes.”

Only towards the end of the ordeal, the soldiers checked his identity card and said that he was not on their list of ‘wanted Palestinians.’ 

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‘Soaked in My Blood’

Despite declaring that he was not a target of arrest, the Israeli soldiers continued to beat and abuse him while he was tied to the military vehicle.

“They threw me on the ground, I was soaked in my blood and unable to move. Only then, they allowed the ambulance to transport me. I was in a miserable condition and I am still suffering from many injuries and burns.”

Al-Abadi is now unable to move his fingers and toes, suggesting possible nerve damage, according to the doctors.  

Doctors installed a plate on his arm in an attempt to repair the bone shattered as a result of the explosive bullet wound.

His brother, Amjad, told the Palestine Chronicle that he cannot sleep at night because of the pain and that the burns on his back have not healed yet.

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No Justice 

According to his brother, he will have to undergo several surgeries. Nobody knows when he will be released from the hospital and return to work at his vegetable stall in Jenin.

Amjad spends much time at the hospital with his brother and sometimes cries in despair fearing that his brother will never fully recover.

“What caused the most serious damage was the abuse he suffered following the injury and the fact that an ambulance was prevented from approaching him for nearly an hour,” Amjad emphasized.

The family does not intend to file a complaint against the Israeli soldiers, because they know too well that Israeli courts do not deliver justice to Palestinians, no matter how horrific the crimes of the soldiers are. 

(The Palestine Chronicle)

– Fayha’ Shalash is a Ramallah-based Palestinian journalist. She graduated from Birzeit University in 2008 and she has been working as a reporter and broadcaster ever since. Her articles appeared in several online publications. She contributed this article to The Palestine Chronicle.

The post ‘They Laughed as I Bled’ – Palestine Chronicle Speaks to Wounded Man Who Was Tied to Israeli Military Vehicle appeared first on Palestine Chronicle.

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