Born in 2003, Ibrahim Nabulsi watched many of his comrades lose their lives to the occupation. He was born into a reality that forced him to mature at a young age.
Israeli forces killed three Palestinians, including prominent resistance fighter Ibrahim al-Nabulsi, during a raid on a house in the occupied West Bank city of Nablus.
Nabulsi is one of Israel’s most wanted people in the northern West Bank city and had survived previous assassination attempts. He was killed amid gunfire exchanges with Israeli soldiers in the heart of Nablus’ old city on Tuesday.
Nabulsi, 19, along with Islam Sobhi and Hussain Jamal Taha, were pronounced dead in Rafidia Hospital, raising the total number of Palestinians murdered by Israeli forces in 2022 to 129, including at least 34 children, according to the Palestinian health ministry.
During the raid, at least 40 more Palestinians were injured.
The Israeli army claimed it fired rocket-propelled grenades at the house where the fighters were barricaded. Nabulsi was wanted for leading attacks on Israeli targets, and was a key figure in Fatah’s military wing, the Al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades.
Israeli soldiers have previously attacked Nabulsi on several occasions, most notably on July 24, when he and a group of fighters were surrounded in a house in the al-Yasmina neighbourhood of Nablus’ old city.
After fierce battle, he managed to escape alive, while two other fighters, Muhammad Azizi, 25, and Abdul Rahman Jamal Suleiman Sobh, 28, were murdered.
The first known attempt to assassinate Nablusi happened in February during a deadly ambush in the Makhfiya neighbourhood. He was previously believed to be one of the three people slain that day, but was later discovered alive at their funeral.
Similarly, his whereabouts following the al-Yasmina attack on July 24 were only revealed when he showed up for Sobh and Azizi’s funerals, enhancing his reputation in the city as an enigmatic fighter.
Hundreds of Palestinian mourners gathered inside and outside Nablus’ Rafidia Hospital ahead of the burial procession for the three martyrs on Tuesday.
In her address to the crowd of irate supporters, Nabulsi’s mother mourned and ululated over his loss.
“Ibrahim triumphed,” she declared, parting her fingers in a V for victory.
“Ibrahim was hunting them, not the other way around. Whenever he heard about an Israeli army raid, he was the first to go out and confront them. This was his fate. We praise God,” said Nabulsi’s father.
The assassination of Nabulsi sparked outrage across the West Bank. Several cities, including Jerusalem, Nablus, Ramallah, and Bethlehem, have declared strikes and a day of mourning.
Student and activist groups in the West Bank have urged Palestinians to confront Israeli soldiers at several checkpoints.
Local media widely published a voice message allegedly made by Nabulsi minutes before his murder, in which he urged Palestinians to resist Israel.
Online, social media users mourned the death of the freedom fighter.
“We pledge to remain on the resistance path. We pledge to honor our martyrs’ blood as they did not go in vain.. by fighting for freedom and never forgetting or forgiving or compromising any inch of Historic #Palestine,” one user said.
“Smile of mother while giving shoulder to her martyred son during the funeral. These smiles are hope of victory and liberation of #Palestine. The mother of Martyr Ebrahim Al Nabulsi at the funeral of her son. #Israel to the demise,” another user added.
Al Araby journalist Izzadeen Ahmad said: “The case of the young resistance fighters in the West Bank is a new and unique case.. It has transcended the factional situation, gained popular support from the younger generation in particular, and posed a challenge to the security coordination system due to its diversity, and confused the accounts of the occupation”.