The Latest: Israeli army: 2 Palestinians killed after attack

AP News
|
Posted: Oct 21, 2015 12:48 AM
The Latest: Israeli army: 2 Palestinians killed after attack

JERUSALEM (AP) — The latest developments in a wave of Israeli-Palestinian violence (all times local).

___

10:10 p.m.

Israel's military says two Palestinians were shot and killed after they attacked soldiers with a knife in the West Bank.

It said a soldier was lightly wounded in the stabbing late Tuesday. Troops at the scene retaliated and killed both assailants, it said.

Hebron is the traditional burial site of Abraham, the shared patriarch of both Jews and Muslims. It has been a center of Israeli-Arab violence for decades. Many attacks in the recent spike in violence have occurred there.

Several hundred ultranationalist Jewish settlers live in heavily guarded enclaves in the midst of some 170,000 Palestinians in the biblical city. Tuesday night's attack came after several other violent incidents during the day.

___

9.00 p.m.

U.N. deputy spokesman Farhan Haq says Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon wants to determine if Israeli and Palestinian leaders are willing to return to negotiations on a two-state solution.

He told reporters this is what Ban and other members of the so-called Quartet of Mideast mediators — including the U.S., EU and Russia — have been encouraging.

Haq said Ban's ideas on the way forward were laid out in his video message to the Israeli and Palestinian people: "stand firm against terror, violence and incitement," preserve the status quo at Jerusalem's holy sites, and demand progress for a political solution.

He said the recent violence, and fears of walking the streets, "should once again tell people that this is the time to go back and pursue peace."

___

8:20 p.m.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu says Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas is "fanning the flames" of recent violence.

Speaking Tuesday night at a press conference with U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, Netanyahu blamed Abbas for incitement.

"President Abbas has not condemned a single one of the 30 terrorist attacks against Israelis over the last month and he continues to glorify the terrorists as heroes," Netanyahu said.

Ban is in the region calling for calm in an attempt to curb weeks of violence that has killed 10 Israelis, 43 Palestinians and an Eritrean migrant worker.

___

6:35 p.m.

A Gaza health official says a Palestinian was killed in clashes with Israeli forces along border.

Ashraf al-Kidra said three Palestinians were injured in the violence Tuesday afternoon as well.

Palestinians in Gaza have repeatedly thrown rocks and rolled burning tires at soldiers on the border who responded with tear gas and sometimes live fire in recent weeks, as part of the spike in violence.

The Israeli military said soldiers "identified terrorists preparing to attack forces." It said the soldiers fired "toward the snipers" and confirmed hits.

It said the attackers Tuesday are from the same cell that has fired on forces near the border before.

___

4:30 p.m.

U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon is pressing for calm during a visit to Jerusalem.

Ban spoke at a press conference with Israeli President Reuven Rivlin on Tuesday, soon after a Palestinian rammed his car into a group of Israelis in the latest in a series of attacks.

"My visit reflects the sense of global alarm at the dangerous escalation in violence between Israelis and Palestinians," he said. "I am here to encourage and support all efforts to lower tensions and prevent the situation from spinning out of control," he said. "It's not too late to avoid a broader crisis."

Ban is set to meet with Israeli and Palestinian leaders during his visit.

___

3:45 p.m.

Israeli police say a Palestinian drove his vehicle into a group of Israelis at a junction near Jerusalem, in the West Bank.

Spokesman Micky Rosenfeld said the attacker was shot and killed after the attack that injured two people.

Media reported the attacker drove his car into people standing on the side of the road, injuring a soldier and a civilian, and then jumped out of the vehicle and stabbed people with a knife before he was shot.

It was the latest in a series of Palestinian attacks against Israeli civilians and soldiers and the third incident on Tuesday.

It came as U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon is in the region to meet with Israeli and Palestinian leaders in an attempt to curb weeks of violence that has killed 10 Israelis, 43 Palestinians and an Eritrean migrant worker.

__

3:00 p.m.

The head of the U.N. cultural agency says she "deplores" a proposal under discussion by UNESCO's executive board that she says "could be seen to alter the status of the Old City of Jerusalem and its Walls" and incite further tensions.

The board is due to vote Tuesday on a resolution submitted by Arab countries that recognizes the Western Wall as a Muslim holy site.

In a statement, Irina Bokova calls on UNESCO's executive board "to take decisions that do not further inflame tensions on the ground and that encourage respect for the sanctity of the Holy Sites."

Israel has been working to block the UNESCO resolution, calling it an attempt to "distort history."

The Western Wall is at the base of Jerusalem's most sensitive holy site. The hilltop compound is revered by Jews as the Temple Mount, the site of the two biblical Jewish temples. Today, it's home to the Al-Aqsa Mosque, Islam's third-holiest shrine and a key national symbol for the Palestinians.

The initial outbreak of violence was fueled by rumors that Israel was plotting to take over the site. Israel has adamantly denied the allegations, saying it has no plans to change the status quo at the site, where Jews are allowed to visit but not pray.

___

2:15 p.m.

The Israeli military says an Israeli man has died after being run over during a clash with Palestinians in the West Bank.

An Associated Press photographer who witnessed the incident says the man exited his car after Palestinian demonstrators threw stones at it and he began to hit passing Palestinian cars with a large stick similar to a baseball bat.

The man hit a passing truck with the stick, and the truck ran the man over.

A Palestinian security official says the truck driver turned himself in, saying he hit the Israeli by accident while trying to swerve out of the way. The official spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak to the media.

— Daniel Estrin in Jerusalem.

___

2:00 p.m.

Israel's prime minister is accusing the Palestinian president, Mahmoud Abbas, of "irresponsible behavior" during the past month of violence.

In a speech Tuesday, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu repeated previous assertions that Abbas has failed to condemn a string of Palestinian attacks. He called on Abbas to "stop lying, stop inciting."

In weeks of unrest, nine Israelis and 42 Palestinians have been killed, along with an Eritrean migrant worker.

Abbas has not condemned the violence outright, and last week he falsely accused Israel of executing a teenage Palestinian attacker who was actually recovering in a hospital.

But he has said Palestinians should stick to what he calls "popular resistance," which includes marches and stone throwing. He has also said armed attacks go against Palestinian interests.

___

1:30 p.m.

A man driving a car with Israeli license plates has been seriously wounded in the West Bank.

An Associated Press photographer who witnessed the incident says the man exited his car after Palestinian demonstrators threw stones at it and he began to hit passing Palestinian cars with a large stick similar to a baseball bat.

The man hit a passing truck with the stick, and the truck ran the man over.

Police spokeswoman Luba Samri says the man was seriously wounded in the incident near the Israeli settlement of Kiryat Arba. Police have not yet released the man's identity.

Earlier Tuesday, the Israeli military said a Palestinian man stabbed a military officer in the same area of the West Bank. Israeli forces shot and killed the man. The military officer was lightly wounded.

___

12:35 p.m.

Israel's opposition leader says the Israeli-Palestinian unrest that has rocked the country over the past month is providing a glimpse of the future if the Palestinians do not receive a state of their own.

Isaac Herzog told a conference in Tel Aviv on Tuesday that "when you look at Jerusalem, you understand what a binational state looks like." He says the current situation can't continue, and that "separation between the people has to be implemented."

He says Israeli leaders "can't keep living under this illusion that everything is fine and you can just manage the conflict."

___

11:30 a.m.

The Israeli military says a Palestinian man has stabbed a military officer in the West Bank and that Israeli forces shot the assailant.

The military says the Israeli officer was injured lightly in the stabbing. It says the Palestinian assailant was taken to a hospital. There were no details on his condition.

The army says the attack took place Tuesday in the West Bank village of Beit Awwa near Hebron during a "violent riot" of Palestinian demonstrators.

___

9:35 a.m.

The Palestinian foreign minister says U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon is coming to the region on a surprise visit to try and bring an end to the monthlong wave of violence.

Riyad Malki told Palestinian radio that Ban will arrive later Tuesday and meet with both Israeli and Palestinian leaders. The visit comes amid a spate of deadly attacks that have sparked fears of another full-fledged Palestinian uprising.

Over the past month, nine Israelis have been killed in Palestinian attacks, most of them stabbings. In that time, 41 Palestinians were killed by Israeli fire, including 20 labeled by Israel as attackers, and the rest in clashes with Israeli troops. An Eritrean migrant died after being shot and beaten by a mob that mistakenly believed he was a Palestinian attacker.

Ban has issued a video message ahead of the visit calling for calm on both sides. He said he understood the Palestinian frustration but that violence would only harm their legitimate aspirations. He said to the Israelis that he understood their concerns and fears due to the security deterioration, but added there was no military solution to the situation.

___

9:15 a.m.

Israel has arrested a top Hamas official in the West Bank, accusing him of inciting recent violence.

The military says it arrested Hassan Yousef on Tuesday near Ramallah. It marks the most high-profile arrest since a wave of unrest swept through the region a month ago.

The military said Yousef had been "actively instigating and inciting terrorism" by encouraging attacks against Israelis. Military spokesman Lt. Col. Peter Lerner says, "Hamas' leaders cannot expect to propagate violence and terror from the comfort of their living rooms and pulpits of their mosques."

Yousef is a co-founder of Hamas whose son, Mosab, later spied for Israel between 1997 and 2007.

Over the past month, nine Israelis have been killed in Palestinian attacks, most of them stabbings. In that time, 41 Palestinians were killed by Israeli fire, including 20 labeled by Israel as attackers, and the rest in clashes with Israeli troops. An Eritrean migrant died after being shot and beaten by a mob that mistakenly believed he was a Palestinian attacker.

___

9:00 a.m.

The Israeli military has demolished the home of a Palestinian who killed an Israeli woman last year.

The measure is one of the recent steps Israel has undertaken to counter a wave of attacks that have killed nine Israelis in the past month, mostly in stabbings. At least 41 Palestinians have been killed, including 20 identified by Israeli authorities as attackers. The rest died in clashes with Israeli forces.

The military says forces demolished the residence of Maher Hashlamoun early Tuesday in Hebron. Last year, Hashlamoun rammed his car into 25-year-old Dalia Lemkus in the West Bank and stabbed her several times. Hashlamoun received back-to-back life sentences.

Hashlamoun's wife told Palestinian radio that soldiers evacuated their three story building and demolished the third floor apartment where her family lived.

Israeli military spokesman Lt. Col. Peter Lerner says the demolition "sends a clear message that there is a personal price to pay when you are involved in terror."