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.