Belfast Telegraph

Tuesday 16 September 2014

Cameraman 'shot' with rubber bullet

Tommy Donnellen claims he was shot in the arm by an Israeli soldier while filming a protest in the West Bank

An Irish cameraman claims he has been shot while filming a protest in Palestine.

Tommy Donnellen, from the Roscommon border near Ballinasloe, said he was shot in the arm with a rubber-coated steel bullet.

He claimed a soldier from the Israeli military was behind the attack.

"I was filming the protest when suddenly I was shot in the arm by a rubber-coated steel bullet, fired by an Israeli soldier from about 40 feet away," Mr Donnellen said. "I think I was deliberately targeted as a journalist as my video camera was plainly visible, and there was no stone throwing going on anywhere near me."

The incident occurred in the village of Nabi Saleh in the West Bank, where Palestinians stage regular protests against Israeli occupation.

Mr Donnellen, who travelled there last month, alleged he tried to reason with the soldier but was forced to flee.

"He then went back down on onto his knee adopting a firing position," he said. "Luckily I was able to run to the cover of a nearby wall."

A spokesman for the Department of Foreign Affairs confirmed it had received reports of the incident and was trying to contact Mr Donnellen. He added that the victim had not sought consular assistance.

Mr Donnellen, who is in his 60s, was reportedly wounded in his upper right arm, which was left badly bruised.

Around 550 people live in Nabi Saleh, which is 20km north-west of Ramallah in the West Bank.

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