Palestinians: Israeli forces hit rally against police abuse

JERUSALEM (AP) — Palestinians claim Israeli forces attacked them after a peaceful rally against police brutality in east Jerusalem.

Witness 49-year-old Abed Zamzam, said that after prayers Thursday Israeli police were in the area to patrol a rally of several hundred Palestinians in the neighborhood of Issawiya.

He says they beat the residents after fatally shooting 20-year-old Mohammed Obeid. A cellphone video shows a policeman kicking a Palestinian already on the ground as an officer was arresting him. The protests continued Friday.

Zamzam’s account differs from that of police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld who said protesters hurled stones and explosive devices at the Israeli patrol. He said an officer, acting in self-defense, shot a suspect who launched firecrackers toward police at “extremely close range.”

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Palestinians and human rights groups have accused Israel of using excessive force.

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