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Last Updated: Saturday, 27 March, 2004, 11:32 GMT
Palestinian boy killed in W Bank
Palestinian youths confront Israeli troops in Balata camp
Stone-throwing Palestinian youths confronted Israeli troops
A six-year-old Palestinian boy has been shot dead near Nablus in the West Bank, in an incident which Israelis and Palestinians blame on each other.

The boy, Khaled Walwil, had been standing at the window of his home in the Balata refugee camp when he was shot and killed, his family said.

An Israeli military commander said the boy was killed when a Palestinian gunman fired at his military jeep.

Palestinians say the boy was shot in the neck by Israeli troops.

Troops entered the camp early on Saturday to search for a fugitive suspected of being behind a number of attempts in recent weeks to smuggle explosives, a local army commander, Colonel Guy Hatzout, told the Associated Press.

The colonel said his troops were withdrawing from the camp at the time of the incident.

There had been no firing for about five minutes when a Palestinian gunman began firing toward the jeep from an alley, he said.

"Ten seconds later, I hear screaming behind my jeep. I see an entire family shouting, and in the arms of a father I see a bleeding boy."

The boy died of his wounds on the way to hospital.

His uncle, Said Walwil, told Reuters news agency his nephew was killed when Israeli troops on a nearby hill opened fire at the house.

Balata blast

On Friday, a member of the al-Aqsa Martyrs' Brigades died when his car blew up in the Balata camp.

Palestinian security sources said explosives the man was transporting apparently detonated accidentally.

The al-Aqsa Martyrs' Brigades, a group linked to Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat's Fatah faction, blamed Israel for the blast.

The BBC's Richard Galpin
"Shot in the neck as he played next to a window"

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