Two Palestinians killed, three Israelis injured in Old City stabbing attack: police
Israeli forensic police stand next to the body of a Palestinian assailant who was shot dead following a reported stabbing attack next to Jerusalem’s Old City Jaffa Gate on December 23, 2015. (AFP/Ahmad Gharabli)
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Two Palestinians were killed after carrying out a stabbing attack at the Jaffa Gate of Jerusalem’s Old City that left three Israelis injured, Israeli police said.
Israeli police spokesperson Micky Rosenfeld told Ma'an that Israeli forces present in the area at the time opened fire on the Palestinians during the attack.
Two Israelis were seriously injured and one moderately, according to police spokesperson Luba al-Samri, who added that one of the three was likely injured by live fire when border guards opened fire on the attackers.
The injured were taken to nearby hospitals Shaare Zedek and Hadassah, the spokesperson added.
Israeli border guards deployed in the area at the time of the attack said they “noticed people running in panic and saw two ‘terrorists’ carrying knives and stabbing a man,” al-Samri said.
One Palestinian was killed on scene, and the Ein Kerem branch of Hadassah hospital confirmed that the second died shortly after arriving to the hospital.
The Jaffa Gate area -- the most commonly-used entrance into the Old City by Jewish Israelis and tourists -- was closed by Israeli Border Police following the attack, witnesses in the area said.
The Damascus Gate located nearby was also closed.
The incident marks the fourth in Jerusalem this month that resulted in the death of a Palestinian who attacked and injured Israelis.
Nearly 130 Palestinians have been killed by Israeli military forces and settlers since violence increased at the beginning of October. Nineteen Israelis were killed in attacks by Palestinian individuals during the same time period.
While attacks initially escalated in occupied East Jerusalem in October, the majority of attacks this month took place in the occupied West Bank.
Twenty-four Palestinians have been killed in December, 18 of whom were shot dead during attacks on Israeli military and civilians, the rest killed during clashes with military forces.
The circumstances of several deaths have been under investigation by rights groups who say that Israeli forces have implemented a "shoot-to-kill" policy, resulting in the death of Palestinians who didn't pose an imminent threat at the time of their death.
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