Israeli and Palestinian pathologists on Thursday disagreed on the cause of death of a Palestinian cabinet member. Ziad Abu Ain died on Wednesday after a brief confrontation with Israeli border police in the West Bank.
After the joint autopsy was completed late Wednesday, the Palestinian doctor said that Ain died from a blow to the body, hinting at the possibility that death may have occurred from when his neck was grabbed by an Israeli officer, The Associated Press (AP) reported. The incident was reportedly captured in a video clip. Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas referred to Ain as a victim of a "clear crime" and a "barbaric act," AP reported. However, the Israeli doctor involved in the autopsy said that Ain died because of a block in the coronary artery.
"After hearing the results of the post-mortem, the Palestinian government holds Israel fully responsible for the killing of Ziad Abu Ein," Ihab Bseiso, a government spokesman, said according to Agence France Presse, adding: "The reason for the death of Abu Ein was his being hit by (Israeli) occupation troops and because of the heavy use of tear gas.”
Another Palestinian cabinet member had reportedly said, earlier on Thursday, that the 55-year-old Ain had died from inhaling tear gas and from beatings received during the confrontation, Haaretz, a local newspaper, reported. The funeral for Ain, whose work included arranging protests against the Israeli settlement in the West Bank, will be held later Thursday. Earlier in the day, the region had witnessed clashes between Israeli paramilitary border police and up to a 100 Palestinians, who hurled rocks at Israeli forces, AP reported.