Israeli forces kill 2 Palestinians in West Bank clashes
JERUSALEM (AP) — Israeli forces killed two Palestinians and wounded several others during separate raids in the occupied West Bank, the Palestinian Health Ministry said Tuesday.
Israel’s paramilitary Border Police said its forces came under attack while arresting suspected militants.
The health ministry said 16-year-old Nader Rayan was shot and killed, and three other Palestinians were wounded, in a raid in the Balata refugee camp in the northern West Bank city of Nablus.
Another Palestinian, Alaa Shiham, who was in his 20s, was killed in Qalandia refugee camp, just outside of Jerusalem. The ministry said six other Palestinians were wounded in Qalandia and taken to a hospital.
The Border Police said forces entered Balata to arrest a suspect who had an M-16 assault rifle in his possession. As they left, a group of Palestinians hurled stones and firebombs at them. The Border Police said forces “neutralized” a Palestinian who opened fire on them.
The Border Police said it arrested two wanted men in Qalandia before coming under attack by residents who hurled heavy objects from rooftops. It said the forces opened fire to disperse the demonstrators. There were no reports of any injuries among the Israelis.
Israel captured the West Bank in the 1967 Mideast war, and the Palestinians want it to form the main part of their future state.
The internationally recognized Palestinian Authority, which administers parts of the occupied West Bank and coordinates with Israel on security matters, condemned the raids.
Israel says its military and police operations are aimed at combating terrorism, while the Palestinians view them as a means of maintaining a nearly 55-year military occupation that shows no sign of ending.
Israeli and Palestinian officials have held meetings in recent days aimed at reducing tensions ahead of Ramadan, which is expected to begin in early April. Last year, the Muslim holy month was marred by protests and clashes in Jerusalem that helped ignite an 11-day Gaza war.