Jerusalem24 – Less than four days after curtains were drawn on the FIFA World Cup 2022 in Qatar, and joyous fans still celebrating Morocco’s achievements in this year’s edition where the Palestinian cause was at the center of almost all celebrations of the Arab teams as a prominent cause, the Israeli military shot dead 23-year-old Palestinian footballer Ahmad Atef Daraghma.
Daraghma, who played as an attacking midfielder in Thaqfi Tulkarm football club, was fatally shot and at least 30 were wounded when a sizable Israeli army force invaded the eastern part of Nablus to provide protection for Israeli settlers who stormed Joseph’s Tomb.
Daraghma was hit in the back and foot with live ammunition, according to the Palestinian Ministry of Health.
Thaqfi Tulkarm football club announced in a Facebook post, Thursday morning, that Daraghma, their top scorer in the 2022/2023 West Bank Premier League with six goals, is a “martyr today”.
Wafa news agency reported that Israeli soldiers opened fire at young men attempting to block their passage, wounding five men; two sustained serious injuries from live ammunition, another was hit by a live round in the eye, and two sustained rubber-coated steel bullet injuries in the hand and head.
The President of the Palestinian Football Association, Lieutenant General Jibril Rjoub, called on “the International and Continental Football Association, and all relevant international and regional institutions, to uphold their laws and human rights, and to take deterrent penalties against this criminal occupation and its relevant institutions.”
Rjoub added that this is a “new crime against a Palestinian athlete and player added to the ongoing series of crimes against sports and Palestinian athletes in particular and the Palestinian people in general, and contrary to all international, sports and humanitarian charters and laws.”Prime Minister Mohammad Shtayyeh has called on the Federation Internationale de Football Association (FIFA) to condemn the Israeli killing of football attacking midfielder Daraghma.
The Premiere called on international rights’ organization “to take responsibility to stop the field Israeli assassinations against Palestinians and hold the Israeli occupation accountable for its crimes.”
Palestinian activist took to social media to condemn the killing of Daraghma.
they kill us in the name of ‘prayer’.
This is the essence of Zionist Colonialism – as if God gave a people the right to ethnically cleanse and kill on earth in the name of a celestial kingdom.
A great sin. pic.twitter.com/rx6zJR6rzn
— Jalal (@JalalAK_jojo) December 22, 2022
Hundreds in Tubas governorate and the northern Jordan Valley took part in Daraghma’s funeral procession Thursday afternoon.
A comprehensive strike was announced earlier in the day, in mourning of Daraghma, with all commercial and public institutions closed in Tubas, Daraghma’s hometown.
The Israeli military has now shot and killed a total of 154 Palestinians in the occupied West Bank including East Jerusalem in 2022, including 37 children. At least 93 of these were not involved in direct, armed confrontations with or attacks against the Israeli army or civilians when they were shot and killed, according to documentation collected by Jerusalem24.