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article imagePalestinian shot dead after stabbing Israeli

By Samih Shahin (AFP)     Feb 7, 2018 in World

A Palestinian stabbed a security guard at the entrance to an Israeli settlement and was shot dead on Wednesday, the army said, in the latest violence in the occupied West Bank.

The guard was lightly wounded at the entrance to the Karmei Tzur settlement north of Hebron, the army said in a statement. Another security guard opened fire on the assailant and killed him, it added.

Palestinian security sources named him as Hamza Zamareh, 17, from Halhul, near the scene of the attack.

Local residents said that Israeli troops arrived at the family home shortly after the attack and began interrogating relatives, while young villagers hurled stones at the soldiers.

The Karmei Tzur attack was the fourth deadly incident in the West Bank since Israeli rabbi Itamar Ben Gal was stabbed to death on Monday near the settlement of Ariel.

In an apparent search for his attacker, Israeli forces raided the West Bank city of Nablus late Tuesday, sparking clashes that left a Palestinian dead.

Earlier on Tuesday, Israeli forces shot dead the suspected Palestinian mastermind of a fatal January ambush on another settler rabbi, Raziel Shevach.

In a pre-dawn raid on the village of Yamoun, near Jenin, troops shot dead 22-year-old suspect Ahmad Jarrar, a member of the militant Islamist group Hamas.

The Shin Bet Israeli security agency said that he was armed.

Jarrar was the son of a Hamas figure killed by Israeli forces during the second intifada of the early 2000s.

- 'Qassam bullet' -

Hamas's armed wing, the Ezzedine al-Qassam Brigades, claimed Jarrar as a member and welcomed the January 9 attack in which Shevach was shot dead in what Israeli media said was a hail of 22 bullets.

"Our heroes in the occupied West Bank wrote a heroic epic that made the Zionists lose sleep and put their security establishment on alert," the al-Qassam Brigades said in a statement.

It said a "Qassam bullet" was responsible for the murder, though it was unclear if the Hamas leadership was claiming direct responsibility for the attack or whether the cell acted on its own.

Israeli forces had been hunting for the assailants since the murder, with roadblocks and checkpoints set up following the attack.

Two Palestinians were killed during earlier raids which Israeli security services said were launched to find Shevach's killers.

Protesters throw stones at Israeli troops who entered the West Bank town of Halhul on February 7  20...
Protesters throw stones at Israeli troops who entered the West Bank town of Halhul on February 7, 2018 to interrogate relatives of a Palestinian who stabbed a security guard at nearby Jewish settlement before being shot dead
HAZEM BADER, AFP

Tensions have risen since US President Donald Trump's controversial recognition of Jerusalem as Israel's capital on December 6.

At least 23 Palestinians have been killed since then, most in clashes with Israeli forces. Two Israelis have been killed in that timeframe.

Israeli settlements are seen as illegal under international law and a major obstacle to peace as they are built on land the Palestinians see as part of their future state.

Israel faced sharp criticism from the administration of former US president Barack Obama over settlement construction, but that has not been the case with Trump's White House.

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