Palestinians killed in Israel raids

Air strike in Gaza follows rocket attack by armed groups to avenge fighters' deaths.

    An Israeli missile destroyed a car near the site from which three rockets had been fired into Israel

    One of the rockets hit a house in the Israeli border town of Sderot but did not cause any injuries, Israeli police said.
    Three Palestinian groups - Islamic Jihad, the Popular Resistance Committees and the Al-Aqsa Martyrs' Brigades - claimed joint responsibility for the Sderot rocket attack.

    In a statement on Saturday, they said the attack was to avenge the deaths of Palestinian fighters shot dead earlier in the day in a West Bank city.

    Undercover unit
    A Palestinian security source said the three fighters were killed by an Israeli undercover unit while driving down a street in Jenin.
    Late on Saturday night, Israeli soldiers returned to the Jenin refugee camp, sparking a fierce firefight with local fighters.
    Palestinian officials said a 17-year-old girl, identified as Bushra Wahash, was shot by Israeli gunfire as she peered out the window of her home.
    The Israeli army said it was investigating the report.
    Policeman killed

    A Palestinian policeman was also shot dead by Israeli troops operating in a village near Jenin, a Palestinian security source said.


    "Killing the Palestinian policeman means that Israel's escalation does not even rule out the Palestinian security services"

    Adnan al-Damiri, Jenin's police chief

    Israeli forces had raided Kafr Dan looking for people it described as "wanted activists", Al Jazeera's correspondent reported.


    Residents told Al Jazeera that Israeli snipers positioned on the occupied buildings opened fire at Abed.


    His family said he was in the house at the time and unarmed. He was shot twice and died immediately, they said.


    Israeli forces continued to carry out search operations in Kafr Dan and detained at least  10 people.


    Adnan al-Damiri, Jenin's police chief, accused the Israeli army of targeting its officers and held it responsible for the ongoing escalation in Jenin.


    He said: "Killing the Palestinian policeman means that Israel's escalation does not even rule out the Palestinian security services."


    Al-Damiri said Palestinian police consider the Israeli operation an attempt to obstruct its efforts to restore security in Jenin.


    School attacked

    In a separate incident on Saturday, three explosive devices were set off in the American International School in Gaza City, causing damage but no injuries, Palestinian security sources and witnesses said.

    Three explosive devices were set off at the 
    American International School [AFP]


    Rebhi Salem, the school's director, said: "A large number of masked gunmen attacked the school at dawn.


    "They poured petrol all around and blew up several explosive devices and destroyed some of the premises."

    Salem quoted the armed men as saying that they were part of an al-Qaeda organisation operating in Gaza.

    The school is a private institution that is part of an association of "American Schools" in the Middle East.


    The curriculum stresses English as well as Arabic studies. None of the teachers are American and a US embassy official said the school has no connection to the US government.

    Two members of staff were briefly abducted from the school in March 2006.

    SOURCE: Al Jazeera and agencies


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