Israel kills five Palestinians in Tulkarem, two in Gaza Strip
Israeli troops backed by armor killed a Palestinian activist and four passers-by during a clash in the West Bank city of Tulkarem on Tuesday, Palestinian witnesses and hospital officials said.
The Palestinian witnesses and officials said troops pursuing a wanted man, Tareq al-Zaghal, exchanged fire with comrades of his from the al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades.
Israeli machinegun fire killed al-Zaghal as well as a 13-year-old boy, a civilian security guard and two other local people who were passing in a car, the witnesses and hospital officials said, according to Reuters. At least 15 other Palestinians were wounded.
Israel's Channel One television said al-Zaghal died in a commando raid on his hideout and the two Palestinians shot dead in the car had tried to ram a nearby army roadblock.
Earlier, in Nablus' Old City, a 39-year-old woman was hit in the face by shrapnel as Israeli troops dispersed demonstrators. Hama Salem was injured when more than 100 youths threw stones and firebombs at Israeli military vehicles, Palestinians said.
Also on Tuesday, Israeli forces arrested Palestinian activists in several West Bank towns, including one alleged to be a senior leader of Fatah who has planned and ordered attacks inside Israel, the Israeli army said.
In Abu Dis, a suburb to Jerusalem, three men who belong to the Islamic Jihad were taken into custody by police, Israeli sources said.
In the village of Al Khader, outside Bethlehem, Israeli special forces arrested Abdel Mahdi Ramadan. The army said he belonged to a group linked to Fatah. Ramadan was responsible for organizing attacks inside Israel, the Israeli army said.
Four Palestinians were arrested in Nablus area, in the northern West Bank, while in Tulkarem, there was one arrest. In Ramallah, seven people were arrested, the army said.
In the Gaza Strip, next to Kfar Darom settlement, Israeli troops were engaged in a gunbattle Tuesday evening with two Palestinian fighters who the army believes intended to carry out an attack in the Jewish settlement. The two Palestinians approached the settlement then fled to a Palestinian home in the PA-controlled area, Israeli press reports said.
Later, Israeli soldiers stormed the house after a lengthy standoff during which they fired rockets at the building commandeered by the Palestinians, Israel Radio said. The house was partly destroyed in the battle, and the Palestinians were apparently killed, the report added.
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