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‘Palestinian lives matter’: Killing of autistic man by Israeli police draws George Floyd parallels

JERUSALEM — The killing of an autistic Palestinian by Israeli police has sparked protests by both Palestinians and Israelis, drawing comparisons with the death of African-American George Floyd in the United States.

Iyad al-Halaq, 32, was on his way to volunteer at a special needs school in Jerusalem’s Old City on May 30 when police chased him and shot him dead, suspecting him of carrying a weapon.

“The boy surrendered and he lay on the ground like a baby in his mother’s womb,” Kheiry al-Halaq said of his son, whom police said was found to be unarmed.

“They shed the blood of an innocent young man who did not experience much from this life … he was one of God’s weakest creatures,” his mother, Rana al-Halaq, said from her son’s bedroom, surrounded by his possessions and a poster of him.

Police are investigating the shooting and two officers have given testimony, a police spokesman said.

Both Floyd, 46, and Halaq were from communities that often complain of police brutality and racism.

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