Israel army: 3 Palestinians killed after attacking soldiers

AP News
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Posted: Jan 07, 2016 4:23 PM

JERUSALEM (AP) — Palestinians brandishing knives attacked Israeli soldiers in two separate incidents in the West Bank on Thursday night before forces opened fire killing three assailants, the military said, in the latest violence in almost four months of near daily Palestinian attacks on Israeli civilians and soldiers.

The Israeli military said three Palestinians wielding knives rushed at troops Thursday evening at the Gush Etzion junction near Jerusalem, prompting the soldiers to open fire, killing two of them. The third attacker was wounded and taken to hospital.

The area has been a frequent target for Palestinian attackers lately.

About two hours later a Palestinian tried to stab soldiers near the West Bank city of Hebron before he was shot and killed by forces, the military said.

Many of the Palestinian attackers in recent violence have come from Hebron. The city is a frequent flashpoint for violence. Some 850 Israeli settlers live in heavily-guarded enclaves surrounded by tens of thousands of Palestinians.

Much of the animosity is over a key holy site, sacred to both Jews and Muslims

Since mid-September, Palestinian attacks on Israeli civilians and soldiers have killed 21 Israelis, mostly in stabbings, shootings and car-ramming assaults. At least 134 Palestinians died by Israeli fire, including 93 said by Israel to be attackers. The rest were killed in clashes with troops.

Israel says the bloodshed is fueled by a Palestinian campaign of incitement. Palestinians say it stems from frustration at decades of occupation.