A man who had previously been imprisoned for working as a spy for Israeli occupation forces was shot and killed on Saturday in Beit Dajan village near Nablus, in the northern West Bank.The victim was alternately identified by Israeli and Palestinian media sources as Omar Helwan and Omar Hussein Abu Haloun, 32, of Beit Dajan village.

Palestinian security officials confirmed that the victim had served a term in a Palestinian Authority prison for spying for Israel, and had since been released. The Palestinian security forces are investigating the murder, but have not yet apprehended any suspects.

Such extrajudicial killings have become a rarity in the West Bank, where Israeli military forces who maintained a system of martial law for 40 years recently handed over some law enforcement functions to the Palestinian security forces of Mahmoud Abbas.

No death sentences for spying have been approved by President Mahmoud Abbas since the agreement with the Israelis was made four years ago.

In the Gaza Strip, however, a death sentence for spying was carried out by the democratically-elected Hamas-led government on May 4th.