An Israeli military base near Bethlehem in the occupied West Bank was targeted by mortar attacks on Tuesday, and Aljazeera has learned that one soldier was injured.

 

Hamas' military wing, Izz al-Din al-Qassam Brigades, claimed responsibility for two of the three attacks in which five mortar shells were also fired at the illegal Neve Dekalim settlement in occupied Gaza Strip.

 

The National Resistance Brigades, the military wing of the Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine (DFLP), has also claimed responsibility for firing two rockets at the Neve Dekalim colony in response to the killing of a 10-year-old Palestinian girl in a UN-run school on Monday.

 

Witnesses said Nuran Did was lining up with classmates to enter the school when she was shot from the Israeli occupation force's Termit post, about 900m away. 

 

Security transfer halted

 

Israel on Tuesday put on hold the transfer of security controls in parts of the occupied West Bank to Palestinians after the mortar attacks.

Palestinians had been preparing to take control in the city of Ram Allah as well as Qalqilya, Jericho and Tulkarem on Tuesday, but talks between Israeli Defence Minister Shaul Mofaz and former Palestinian security minister Muhammad Dahlan on the issue broke up without agreement on Monday night.

Dahlan said no date for a transfer had been agreed and that he would meet with Mofaz again on Thursday "to conclude an agreement on all the points of understanding."

Israel had appeared ready to hand over responsibility to the Palestinians in parts of the occupied West Bank after they had managed to halt attacks by resistance groups in the Gaza Strip.

Israeli sources said Mofaz told Dahlan there would be no transfers in the West Bank until there was a complete halt to the mortar attacks in Gaza.  

Activist transferred

 

In a separate development, Israeli authorities have transferred Abdul Rahim Malluh, assistant secretary-general of the Popular Front for Liberation of Palestine (PFLP), from Magdo prison, south of Haifa, to the Negev desert prison.

 

Malluh told Aljazeera that he was transferred without prior warning, saying the Israeli authorities initially took him to Aufer prison, near Ram Allah, but the jail warden refused to take him in.

 

Malluh was arrested about 20 months ago; subsequently, an Israeli court sentenced him to seven years prison after convicting him of belonging to what it said was a hostile organisation.