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Israel says two Palestinian attackers shot

December 26, 2015

A Palestinian was shot after ramming his car into an Israeli checkpoint in the West Bank, the Israeli military says. Just hours earlier, police killed a Palestinian who allegedly pulled a knife on them in Jerusalem.

Israeli security forces scuffle with a Palestinian protester outside Damascus Gate in Jerusalem's old city during a demonstration demanding Israeli authorities to return the bodies of alleged Palestinian attackers, on December 26, 2015
Image: Getty Images/AFP/A. Gharabli

The Israeli army said that the 56-year old car driver tried to run over a soldier at the West Bank checkpoint in Huwara on Saturday.

"Forces responded to the imminent danger and fired towards the perpetrator," the military said, adding that the injured soldier had been evacuated to hospital.

A Palestinian witness at the scene, however, countered that the driver was shot by mistake.

"One soldier signaled for the man to come forward, a soldier was on the edge of the road and he tried to move backward when he slipped. The second soldier opened fire, firing four bullets at the man, after that they tried to give him first aid," said Jamil Dawoud, who reported that he was in the car behind the alleged attacker.

The wounded car driver died in hospital, according to the Palestinian Health Ministry.

Attack in Jerusalem

The news of the West Bank incident comes just hours after Jerusalem police gunned down a Palestinian in the Old City.

Officers approached a man they said was following Jewish worshippers, and asked to see his papers, spokeswoman Luba Samri said.

"The terrorist whipped out a knife and tried to stab a police officer. He was swiftly shot and neutralized," Samri said.

On Saturday afternoon, the security forces used anti-riot measures to disperse a protest of some 150 Palestinians in the Old City area (pictured above).

The police fired stun grenades and rubber-coated bullets, injuring around 20 people, Palestinian emergency services said.

Cycle of violence

On Friday, Israeli border guards killed a Palestinian woman who tried to ram a car into them in the West Bank, while three incidents on Thursday resulted in three dead assailants and three injured police officers.

The latest wave of violence erupted in early October, and has so far claimed the lives of at least 133 Palestinians, 19 Israelis, an American and an Eritrean.

Israel says the violence stems from a Palestinian campaign of incitement, but Palestinian authorities argue the violence comes from their frustration at nearly five decades of Israeli military rule coupled with the collapse of US-sponsored peace talks.

dj/se (AFP, Reuters, AP)