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Video prompts look at killing of Palestinian teens

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FILE — In this Thursday, May 15, 2014 file photo, men try to help Palestinian teen, Mohammad Abu Daher, 17, on the ground, moments after he was shot to death by Israeli troops near the West Bank city of Ramallah. An investigation of a fatal West Bank clash between Israeli forces and Palestinian stone-throwers indicates that troops used live fire without justification and in violation of the army’s rules of engagement, an Israeli human rights group said Tuesday. The rights group B’Tselem said its findings are based on witness accounts and medical records. Spokeswoman Sarit Michaeli said security camera footage of the incident that surfaced late Monday supports the group’s findings. (AP Photo/Majdi Mohammed, File)

FILE — In this Thursday, May 15, 2014 file photo, men try to help Palestinian teen, Mohammad Abu Daher, 17, on the ground, moments after he was shot to death by Israeli troops near the West Bank city of Ramallah. An investigation of a fatal West Bank clash between Israeli forces and Palestinian stone-throwers indicates that troops used live fire without justification and in violation of the army’s rules of engagement, an Israeli human rights group said Tuesday. The rights group B’Tselem said its findings are based on witness accounts and medical records. Spokeswoman Sarit Michaeli said security camera footage of the incident that surfaced late Monday supports the group’s findings. (AP Photo/Majdi Mohammed, File)

FILE — In this Thursday, May 15, 2014 file photo, a Palestinian man shouts for help moments after Palestinian teen, Mohammad Abu Daher, on the ground, was shot to death by Israeli troops near the West Bank city of Ramallah. An investigation of a fatal West Bank clash between Israeli forces and Palestinian stone-throwers indicates that troops used live fire without justification and in violation of the army’s rules of engagement, an Israeli human rights group said Tuesday. The rights group B’Tselem said its findings are based on witness accounts and medical records. Spokeswoman Sarit Michaeli said security camera footage of the incident that surfaced late Monday supports the group’s findings. (AP Photo/Majdi Mohammed, File)

FILE — In this Thursday, May 15, 2014 file photo, a man shouts for help moments after Palestinian teen, Mohammad Abu Daher, on the ground, was shot to death by Israeli troops near the West Bank city of Ramallah. An investigation of a fatal West Bank clash between Israeli forces and Palestinian stone-throwers indicates that troops used live fire without justification and in violation of the army’s rules of engagement, an Israeli human rights group said Tuesday, May 20, 2014. The rights group B’Tselem said its findings are based on witness accounts and medical records. Spokeswoman Sarit Michaeli said security camera footage of the incident that surfaced late Monday supports the group’s findings. (AP Photo/Majdi Mohammed, File)

In this Thursday, May 15, 2014 photo, men try to help Palestinian teen, Mohammad Abu Daher, on the ground, moments after he was shot to death by Israeli troops near the West Bank city of Ramallah. An investigation of a fatal West Bank clash between Israeli forces and Palestinian stone-throwers indicates that troops used live fire without justification and in violation of the army’s rules of engagement, an Israeli human rights group said Tuesday, May 20, 2014. The rights group B’Tselem said its findings are based on witness accounts and medical records. Spokeswoman Sarit Michaeli said security camera footage of the incident that surfaced late Monday supports the group’s findings. (AP Photo/Majdi Mohammed)

FILE — In this Friday, May 16, 2014 file photo, Palestinian relatives of Nadim Nuwara mourn during his funeral who was shot dead by Israeli forces on Thursday, during their funeral in the West Bank city of Ramallah on Friday, May 16, 2014. An investigation of a fatal West Bank clash between Israeli forces and Palestinian stone-throwers indicates that troops used live fire without justification and in violation of the army’s rules of engagement, an Israeli human rights group said Tuesday, May 20, 2014. The rights group B’Tselem said its findings are based on witness accounts and medical records. Spokeswoman Sarit Michaeli said security camera footage of the incident that surfaced late Monday supports the group’s findings. (AP Photo/Majdi Mohammed, File)

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JERUSALEM (AP) — Security-camera video showing two unarmed Palestinians crumpling to the ground during a lull in a stone-throwing clash with Israeli soldiers revived allegations by human rights activists Tuesday that the troops often use excessive force.

The Israeli rights group B’Tselem said the images back its findings that troops killed the teens without cause by firing live rounds from more than 200 meters away. The soldiers were in “zero danger” at the time, said Sarit Michaeli of B’Tselem.

Israeli Defense Minister Moshe Yaalon said, “It was a life-threatening situation, so the officers acted accordingly.”

He said he hadn’t seen the video, but alleged the images had been manipulated through editing.

Lt. Col. Peter Lerner, a senior spokesman, said preliminary findings show forces fired only rubber-coated steel pellets, a standard means of crowd control, and did not use live fire.

The United Nations and the U.S. State Department called on the Israeli authorities to conduct a transparent investigation.

U.N. Assistant Secretary-General Oscar Fernandez-Taranco told the Security Council’s monthly Mideast briefing: “It is of serious concern that initial information appears to indicate that the two Palestinians killed were both unarmed and appeared to pose no direct threat.”

At issue is a clash between Israeli troops and Palestinian stone-throwers May 15 near the West Bank town of Beitouniya, a few hundred meters from an Israeli military base, Ofer. On that day, Palestinians marked the anniversary of their uprooting in the war over Israel’s 1948 creation by holding marches and protests in the West Bank and Gaza.

Starting around midday, several dozen Palestinian youths burned tires in a main street and threw stones toward Israeli troops, according to witnesses and B’Tselem.

Troops fired rubber bullets, but also four live rounds,

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