two Palestinians and an Israeli officer killed in clashes in the West Bank

LIsraeli army said that “two suspects” had approached the Jalameh crossing point between the Jenin sector and Israel during the night. They fired in the direction of soldiers posted at the checkpoint, “who responded by opening fire”according to the army.

An officer was killed in the exchange of fire and the two “suspects” have been “neutralized”, according to this source. In Ramallah, the Palestinian Ministry of Health confirmed the death of “two young men” in these clashes.

According to the Palestinian news agency Wafa, they are Ahmed Ayman Ibrahim Abed, 23, and Abdel Rahman Hani Soubhi Abed, 22.

The military did not immediately release the identity of the officer. “Unfortunately, last night we lost an army commander”Israeli army chief Aviv Kohavi said in a statement, addressing “his most sincere condolences” to his relatives.

Since last March, the Israeli army has stepped up its operations in the northern West Bank, particularly in the regions of Nablus and Jenin where Palestinian armed groups are active.

These operations, frequently interspersed with clashes with the local civilian population or combatants, left dozens dead on the Palestinian side and “led to the arrest of more than 1500 people” in the occupied West Bank according to the head of the Israeli army, Aviv Kohavi.

Last week, two Palestinians from the Islamist movements, Hamas and Islamic Jihad, were killed there in Israeli raids. These two movements have “greeted” Wednesday “the operation” at the Jalameh crossing point without however claiming it directly.

“Our Palestinian people in Jenin, Nablus and all the cities of the West Bank are pursuing a massive revolution and a permanent struggle against the occupation” israeli, “in response to his crimes”said Hamas, the ruling movement in the Gaza Strip.

(with AFP)

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