Thursday, December 1, 2022

Deadly clashes in West Bank, shooting attack in Jerusalem

Deadly clashes in West Bank, shooting attack in Jerusalem

JERUSALEM (Reuters) - Israeli forces martyred two Palestinian teens in clashes in the occupied West Bank, Palestinian officials said, and a Palestinian gunman fatally shot an Israeli soldier in Jerusalem, Israeli officials said.

Police said the shooter had opened fire at Israeli security forces at a checkpoint at the entrance to Palestinian refugee camp Shuafat on Jerusalem's outskirts near the West Bank.

A female soldier was killed, the Israeli military said, and a security guard was badly wounded, police said, while forces were hunting for the assailant.

Earlier, the Israeli military said security forces on an operation to arrest a gunman in the West Bank city of Jenin returned fire at Palestinians who shot and threw explosives at them.

The Palestinian Health Ministry said two Palestinians, aged 16 and 18, were martyred and 11 were wounded. Palestinian President Mhamoud Abbas condemned the killings.

The latest in near-daily incursions into Jenin, a militant stronghold, underlined the volatile security climate in the West Bank as Israel heads towards elections on Nov. 1.

Israel launched its Operation Breakwater against militants on March 31 in response to a string of fatal Palestinian street attacks in Israel.

The surge in violence in the West Bank, where the Palestinian have limited self-rule, has been one of the worst in years with around 80 Palestinians martyred, including militants and civilians.

UN Middle East envoy Tor Wennesland said he was alarmed by the violence and called for calm.

US-brokered peace talks aimed at establishing a Palestinian state in the West Bank, Gaza and East Jerusalem, collapsed in 2014 and show no sign of revival.

Israeli security officials have called on Abbas's Palestinian Authority (PA) to do more to rein in violence.

The PA, increasingly unpopular in the West Bank, says its ability to exert its rule has been systematically undermined by Israel's incursions.

Abbas's spokesman, Nabil Abu Rudeineh, said in a statement that Israel's government was "delusional" in thinking such actions would promote peace and stability.