The Daily Star
June 18, 2012 - 12:00am

Dozens of Palestinians protested Sunday at the Ain al-Hilweh Palestinian refugee camp in the southern coastal city of Sidon over recent clashes that led to the killing of a Palestinian teenager near a refugee camp in north Lebanon.

Protesters chanted slogans condemning the use of arms against Palestinian civilians and called for establishing a committee to probe the circumstances surrounding the Friday killing of Ahmad Qassem, 15, near the Nahr al-Bared refugee camp in north Lebanon.

Qassem was killed near the northern Palestinian refugee camp after a violent standoff between locals and the Lebanese Army.

The army said in a statement Friday that the clash began after soldiers at a checkpoint located inside the camp detained a Palestinian motorcyclist who did not have identification papers.

The man’s wife and a number of locals gathered in protest, which escalated into burning tires and pelting soldiers with rocks.

Security sources said army soldiers fired back, killing Qassem and wounding four others.

Residents also blocked roads leading to the camp with burning tires, the army said.

The Ain al-Hilweh gathering Sunday included members of the camp’s popular committees and was organized by the Independent Palestinian Forum, an independent youth organization.

Palestinian authorities kept guard during the protest and at one stage had to intervene to prevent some of the protesters reaching a Lebanese Army checkpoint.


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