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Alleged Palestinian attacker kills Israeli woman, sparking renewed violence in West Bank

  • A suspected Palestinian attacker carried out a deadly attack in the southern part of the occupied West Bank on Monday, killing an Israeli woman and seriously injuring a man.
  • This latest outbreak of violence reflects rising tensions between Palestinian militants, Israeli security forces and radical Jewish settlers.
  • This growing instability has led to one of the most intense periods of conflict in the West Bank in almost twenty years.

A suspected Palestinian attacker killed an Israeli woman and seriously injured a man in the south of the occupied West Bank on Monday, Israeli authorities said, as violence erupted in the troubled area two days after a shootout that killed two Israelis.

Eight Palestinians were injured in an Israeli army raid near the city of Nablus later Monday, according to Wafa, the official Palestinian news agency. One of the eight was in critical condition and had a shot to the head, the report said. The army did not respond to requests for more information.

Monday's violence was part of a sharp escalation in recent months involving Palestinian militants, Israeli security forces and radical Jewish settlers. It came as Israeli forces were already on high alert, searching for the gunman who killed two Israelis in the northern West Bank on Saturday.

The explosive mix of Palestinian gunmen waging gunfights, as well as near-night – and often deadly – raids by the Israeli army to arrest militants has fueled the West Bank's worst fighting in nearly two decades.

Reprisals by Jewish settlers against Palestinians have also heightened tensions. Late Sunday, Israeli settlers threw rocks and firebombs at a Palestinian home south of Nablus near the site of Saturday's deadly attack, local officials said, causing damage but no injuries.


On Monday, a Palestinian gunman opened fire on an Israeli car on Route 60, the West Bank's main north-south highway, near the Palestinian city of Hebron. The army said an Israeli woman was killed and a man seriously injured in the apparent shooting from a passing car.

The victim's limousine was riddled with over a dozen bullet holes. The gunman fled, prompting the second large-scale search by Israeli security forces in two days. The military closed all entrances to Hebron and other southern and eastern cities.

The Al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades, an armed group linked to Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas' Fatah party, claimed responsibility for the shooting.

The Israel Rescue Service reported that the two victims were in their 40s and that a six-year-old girl who was also in the car was unharmed. The man was taken to a hospital, the emergency services said.

A regional council representing settlements identified the woman killed as Batsheva Nigri, a mother of three and a kindergarten teacher who lived in the Jewish settlement of Beit Hagai near Hebron.

Middle East graphics

In the latest attack in the occupied West Bank, a suspected Palestinian gunman killed one Israeli and wounded another.

Meanwhile, in the Gaza Strip, hundreds of Palestinians protested near the border fence with Israel. According to the Gaza Ministry of Health, eight people were injured by Israeli fire and tear gas.

Monday's shooting came two days after another Palestinian attack killed an Israeli father and son who were getting their car washed in the northern Palestinian town of Hawara, sparking an uproar in the West Bank.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said at the scene that Israel was “in the grips of a new terrorist offensive” allegedly sponsored by Iran, which Israel regards as its archenemy in the region.

“We are working around the clock – all officers and soldiers – to apprehend the killers and those trying to kill Israeli citizens,” Netanyahu said.

According to a tally by The Associated Press, almost 180 Palestinians have been killed by Israeli fire in the West Bank since the beginning of this year. Israel says most of the Palestinians killed were militants. But young people who protested against the attacks and were not involved in the clashes were also killed.


About 30 people were killed by Palestinian attacks on Israelis during this period.

Israel says the raids were designed to dismantle militant networks and deter future attacks. Palestinians say the crackdowns are undermining their security forces, fueling more militancy and tightening Israeli control over countries they aspire to be a hoped-for future state. In the 1967 Middle East War, Israel conquered the West Bank, East Jerusalem and the Gaza Strip.

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