Thursday, December 31, 2015

Egypt border guards shoot dead naked man crossing Gaza border, said to suffer mental illness

Footage appears to show a man gesticulating at Egyptian forces to stop shooting at man in the sea, who had severe mental-health issues

Saturday - December 26, 2015 

Mary Atkinson 

Footage has emerged appearing to show Egyptian forces shooting dead an unarmed man who had strayed a few metres over its border with Gaza.

Ishaq Khalil Hassan, 26, reportedly had severe mental health issues and was completely naked when he walked through the sea close to the shore, passing under a fence that marks the border between Egypt and Gaza.

The incident took place on Thursday near the Egyptian border town of Rafah.

Hassan, who also suffered from learning difficulties, had previously received treatment at hospitals in Egypt, his family told Al Jazeera Arabic.

Hassan’s nephew said on Saturday that his uncle, from the south of Gaza, had been suffering from a mental-health crisis and decided to attempt to get into Egypt for further treatment, Al Jazeera Arabic reported.

According to Hassan’s relative, he was unable to cross over legally due to the Egypt-Palestine border crossing at Rafah being closed.

Egyptian forces stationed at the border reportedly fired 15 shots at Hassan without prior warning.
The video appears to show a member of the Palestinian border force standing near the sea gesturing at his Egyptian counterparts to stop and gesturing at his head in an attempt to show that Hassan did not pose a threat, after which the shooting continues.

Hassan’s relatives said on Saturday that Egyptian authorities had yet to return his body for burial.

Egyptian officials have yet to comment on the reports.

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