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Bashar Elyan was on his way back from school to his home in Qalandia refugee camp, north of Occupied Jerusalem, when an Israeli bullet hit him in his right eye.
The 15-year-old Palestinian child Elyan screamed, “My eyes, my eyes” and immediately fell to the ground before he was taken to the Palestine Medical Hospital in Ramallah, and from there to Al-Najah Hospital in Nablus. There Elyan was shocked with the news that would haunt him for the rest of his life, “removing his right eye completely”.
Elyan said: “As soon as I left the school, I saw the Israeli police fire live and metal bullets, tear gas canisters and sound bombs at civilians. I tried to take cover at the school wall but I felt something entering my eyes. The pain was intense and I fell down.”
He added that he did nothing and did not pose any danger to the occupation police, asking: "What have I done to lose my eye?”
He expressed his fear that the removal of his eye will change the course of his life as he is still in the tenth grade at school.
His mother called on international institutions to abide by their responsibilities and hold Israel accountable for its horrible act against her child.
Crying so hard the mother wondered: “What did my son do to target his eye?” This is the terror that the Israeli occupation is practicing without anyone bringing it to account, she added.
She called on the Palestinian Authority (PA) and all Palestinian officials to file a lawsuit against the occupation for its continuous crimes against children and the Palestinian people.
This Israeli crime coincides with International Children's Day which was approved by the United Nations in 1954. Palestinian children are systematically subjected to persistent Israeli aggression, whether by killing, arrest or injury, and the incident of Elyan will not be the last.
The following day, the Palestinian anchorwoman, Aseel Suleiman, voiced words on the air against the PA announcement of resuming security coordination with Israel and cited the incident of the child Elyan as proof of Israel’s terrorist practices and non-abidance by any agreement with the Palestinians.
She added, “Bashar lost his eye yet he gained vision that you do not have ... (addressing the PA)”.