Two Palestinians were killed Sunday during Israeli army operations in the West Bank, while an Israeli boy was killed and three other people were wounded in a separate attack on the Golan Heights from nearby Syrian territory.
An Israeli army spokesman said a civilian vehicle was attacked near the security fence in the central Golan Heights, killing the Israeli boy. The teen’s father, who is a Defense Ministry contractor, and several other workers in the vehicle were wounded.
"This is not a case of errant fire but of an intended attack," Lt. Col. Peter Lerner said, describing the incident as a breach of the cease-fire agreement in the Golan Heights between Israel and Syria. In response, Israeli army tanks fired at military posts in Syria.
Israel seized the Golan Heights from Syria during the 1967 Middle East War.
In the West Bank, an Israeli army force raided Ramallah in the predawn hours, triggering clashes with residents of the Palestinian Authority’s capital. The fighting was concentrated in the city center, close to a police station.
Israel had warned Palestinian security forces in advance to stay off the streets during the raid to avoid being shot by the Israelis. After the army withdrew from the city, some residents turned their anger toward the Palestinian security.
Youths hurled rocks at the police station and damaged vehicles parked outside while chanting slogans against security cooperation with Israel and demanding that the force protect them against the Israeli incursions and arrests.
Palestinian police shot live bullets in the air to disperse the crowds, according to the Palestinian police and witnesses. A Palestinian civil defense statement said Mohammad Atallah Tarifi, 30, from Ramallah, was later found dead on a rooftop with a bullet wound.
An autopsy at the Palestinian Medical Complex in Ramallah showed that Tarifi was hit by a bullet from an Israeli weapon, Palestinian security spokesman Adnan Damiri said. Guy Inbar, a spokesman for the Israeli Civil Administration, said the army was looking into the incident and cause of death.
In Nablus, to the north of Ramallah, Israeli forces raided several neighborhoods and refugee camps, and in one clash at the al-Ein camp opened fire and killed Ahmad Fahmawi, 27.
"Security personnel identified a suspect approaching them in a threatening manner," said an Israeli army statement on the incident. "The force called on the suspect to stop and after he failed to comply they fired warning shots in the air. The troops then fired toward the suspect, after he did not cease to advance. Initial inquiry suggests that the suspect was mentally unstable. The incident is currently being investigated."
The army rounded up 40 Palestinians in the West Bank, bringing the total arrested since the start of the military operation 10 days ago to more than 350 people, Palestinian rights groups said.
Worried about the daily Israeli incursions into West Bank cities since the disappearance of three Israeli teens on June 12, the Palestinian Authority decided Sunday to file a complaint about Israel to the United Nations Security Council.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said at the opening of his cabinet's weekly meeting Sunday that the army operation in the West Bank "entails a certain friction with the civilian population."
Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas asked Netanyahu to present evidence that the Islamist movement Hamas was behind the abduction of the Israeli teens before he would act against the group with which he reconciled at the end of April and formed a unity government.
"We have unequivocal proof" that Hamas is responsible for the abduction, said Netanyahu, which he said will be made public in due time.
Abukhater is a special correspondent.Copyright © 2014, Los Angeles Times