Israeli forces kill 2 Palestinians in West Bank shootout: NPR
Nablus, West Bank – Israeli troops and special forces on an arrest mission exchanged fire on Sunday with Palestinians barricaded in a house in the occupied West Bank, Israeli police said. The local rescue service said two Palestinians had been killed.
Israeli police said a number of armed Palestinians were killed during the hours-long battle in the heart of Nablus city, without specifying. Police said no Israeli forces were injured.
The Palestinian Red Crescent Society said the two men were killed in clashes with the army in Nablus and identified them as Aboud Sobh, 29, and Muhammad Al-Azizi, 22. The rescue service said 19 Palestinians were injured, two of them seriously.
Israeli Prime Minister Yair Lapid said the suspects were wanted for a series of shootings.
“We are not going to sit and wait for Israeli citizens to be harmed,” he told a cabinet meeting. “We will go out and harm the terrorists in their homes.”
Nabil Abu Rdeneh, spokesman for Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, condemned the violence, saying it was the result of Israel’s occupation of land Palestinians seek for an independent state.
“The region will remain in a cycle of violence until the end of the occupation and a just peace,” he said.
The military said a violent protest erupted as troops operated in Nablus, with protesters throwing explosive devices at soldiers and opening fire on them. The soldiers returned fire, according to the army.
The army said it was also operating in a separate area of the West Bank, where another brief exchange of fire took place.
Israeli forces have been carrying out near-daily raids in the West Bank for months, in an effort to quell a spate of attacks by Palestinians on Israelis that has since subsided.
The army encountered resistance during some of these raids, which in several cases proved deadly.
Palestinian attacks on Israelis earlier this year killed 19 people. More than 60 Palestinians have been killed by Israeli forces since the start of the year, according to an official Palestinian tally.
Palestinians want the West Bank, Gaza Strip and East Jerusalem, territories captured by Israel in the 1967 Middle East war, for their hoped-for state.