Israeli forces drag away terrified Palestinian man with Down's syndrome during Sheikh Jarrah protest

Israeli forces drag away terrified Palestinian man with Down's syndrome during Sheikh Jarrah protest
Israeli forces can be seen harassing Mohammed Al-Ajlouni, a resident of Sheikh Jarrah who suffers from Down syndrome, leaving him visibly shaken and requiring medical treatment.
2 min read
22 February, 2022
Tensions have run high in Sheikh Jarrah for the past nine days [file photo-Getty]

A video showing Israeli soldiers dragging away a young Palestinian man with Down's syndrome has surfaced online, triggering anger and consternation in the West Bank. 

In the video, Israeli soldiers are seen manhandling the visibly terrified disabled man - said to be in his 20s - during a protest in Sheikh Jarrah in occupied East Jerusalem on Monday, where Palestinian homes have been subject to demolition and families ordered out of their homes.

Palestinians are seen attempting to stop the man being dragged away, who is in tears during the ordeal, and calm him as he huddles in terror. 

The release of the footage sparked immediate anger online. 

"Israeli state violence is cruel and does not care about a Palestinian's age, gender, or ability. All Palestinians are seen as a threat," the IfNotNow organisation wrote on Twitter.  

"On the same week of the violent destruction of the freedom tent camp by thugs, other thugs on the other side of the city of Jerusalem, in Sheich [sic] Jarrah neighborhood, violently trying to arrest a young man with Down syndrome. Criminals in uniform. Israel 2022," another commenter wrote

It was reported by Wafa, that Israeli forces attacked the man, named as Mohammed Al-Ajlouni after he yelled "Allahu Akbar" at a demonstration. 

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"These Israeli soldiers attacking a Palestinian child w/#DownSyndrome is beyond evil. As the grandfather of a special needs child, what I’m seeing here both breaks my heart & fills me w/ rage. Damn these heartless brutes. Just damn them for their cruelty," James Zogby, founder of the Arab American Institute tweeted.

A later video showed the distressed Ajlouni being comforted by a Palestinian man and a member of the Palestinian Red Crescent, who help the man into an ambulance. 

The attack on Al-Ajlouni was one of a series of attacks by Israeli forces that day. 

Palestinian news agency Wafa reported that the Salem family, who are facing the threat of being forcibly expelled from their homes, were also attacked by Israeli forces. 

Tensions in the area have run high after the leader of the far-right Otzma Yehudit party set up an office on Salem's property.