Two Palestinians who attempted to stab Israeli border police in the West Bank have been shot and killed as deadly violence in the occupied territories continues.
The shooting happened in the southern West Bank city of Hebron on Monday and was the latest incident in a new surge of violence between Palestinians and Israeli forces.
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According to a police statement, two male Hebron residents, aged 17-20, approached a security checkpoint at the shrine known to Muslims as the Ibrahimi Mosque and to Jews as the Cave of the Patriarchs.
The two aroused the suspicion of the border policemen, who asked them to step aside for inspection, but the suspects did not respond.
When the border police approached, one of the suspects pulled a knife and attempted to stab them. In response officers shot him.
The second suspect then pulled a knife and tried to stab the border policemen, who opened fire on him too, police said, noting one of their officers was “very lightly wounded in his hand” during the incident.
The Hebron attack was Monday’s second and the seventh on Israeli security forces or civilians since Friday, Israeli authorities said, shattering several weeks of relative calm.
“This is very much a self-perpetuating wave of violence,” reported Al Jazeera’s Imran Khan from West Jerusalem. “These aren’t coordinated attacks, it’s just very angry young men lashing out at security forces for what they experience here in the occupied Palestinian territories.”
Since October, 228 Palestinians, 34 Israelis, two Americans, one Jordanian, one Eritrean, and a Sudanese have been killed in ongoing violence, according to a count by the AFP news agency.
Israeli security forces say most of the Palestinians killed were carrying out knife, gun or car-ramming attacks. Others were shot dead during protests and clashes.
|Israeli police officer stabbed in Jerusalem