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Former Israeli soldier sets self on fire, commits suicide

Palestine, (The Palestine Information Centre)A young Israeli man who formerly served as a soldier of the regime has died after he set himself on fire earlier this week as his request for disability status was rejected.

On Thursday, Bar Kalaf, who served in the Israeli military from 2008-2011 and was present in the 2014 war on the Gaza Strip as a reservist, succumbed to injuries he sustained when he set himself alight last Tuesday.

Kalaf, 33, committed suicide after the ministry of military affairs rejected his request for disability status.

According to his family, Kalaf had asked to be recognized as suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder due to his military service.

His mother Kochava told Channel 13 News that her son “felt hopeless due to being unable to get help,” and that a medical committee handling his request did not examine his condition thoroughly.

“You can’t take an 18-year-old boy for three years and think nothing will go wrong, that no mental health issues will develop. After [those three years in the Israeli military], he’ll have to deal with life,” she said.

The ministry of military affairs said Kalaf’s request was rejected as the medical practitioners treating him did not diagnose him with PTSD, but rather with a different mental illness that was considered unrelated to his military service.

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