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Handicapped Man Killed at Secret Service Headquarters

May 26, 1995

ZUWEIDA, Gaza Strip (AP) _ A 21-year-old handicapped tailor was shot and killed at the headquarters of the Palestinian secret service, the man’s family said Friday. A Palestinian official said the death was an accident.

Reporters who went to Yousef Sharawi’s wake in Zuweida, south of Gaza City, were confronted by a secret service agent who insisted on knowing who the reporters worked for and then sat close to the family throughout the interview.

Family members said in the presence of the agent that Sharawi’s death occurred accidentally when another agent at the secret service headquarters accidentally fired his automatic rifle.

Khaled al-Kidre, the Palestinian Authority’s chief prosecutor, told The Associated Press that Sharawi was killed accidentally during questioning after being detained on charges of possessing illegal material. He wouldn’t elaborate on the charge.

``We have filed charges against the agent for manslaughter and he will be tried,″ Kidre said.

Mahrous Sharawi said his brother, Yousef, who walked with a crutch because his right leg had been paralyzed by polio, left the house Tuesday without telling anyone where he was going.

He said police notified the family Thursday of Tuesday night’s shooting.

He denied speculation that Sharawi died under interrogation on suspicion he had collaborated with the Israelis.

Two Palestinians suspected of collaborating with Israel have died in custody since the Palestinian Authority has taken control of the Gaza Strip and the West Bank town of Jericho. The interrogators have not been tried.

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