At least 10 Palestinians were wounded when Israeli forces fired tank shells and heavy machine-guns in several parts of the West Bank and Gaza Strip on Sunday, said reports.
The death toll from the almost five months of unrest also rose Sunday when a Palestinian man died of wounds suffered in violence in the West Bank town of Hebron two days ago.
In Sunday's unrest, three Palestinians were wounded by shrapnel, one of them critically, after Israel fired shells at the village of al-Khader near the West Bank town of Bethlehem and Daheisha refugee camp, witnesses told AFP.
The bombardment, which also saw some 20 shells drop on a tourist resort under construction in the area, followed shooting by Palestinian gunmen from al-Khader on the road towards the Jewish settlement of Efrat further south, they said.
The army said its positions near al-Khader had come under fire but that it did not retaliate.
Violence also flared in the Gaza Strip, said the agency.
Four Palestinians were wounded, two of them seriously, when Israeli forces fired shells and machine-guns near the Rafah area on the border between Gaza and Egypt, hospital sources said.
They said another 10 were being treated after inhaling "poisonous gas."
The army said three grenades were thrown at a military vehicle on the border and that soldiers had returned fire but there were no injuries, said Haaretz newspaper.
Another three Palestinians were wounded when the Israeli army fired on the Khan Yunis refugee camp to the north of Rafah with heavy machine-guns, said the paper.
Witnesses said the soldiers unleashed their guns after an exchange of fire between Palestinians and Israeli troops by the neighboring Jewish settlement of Neve Dekalim.
The Israeli army also reported an exchange of fire at the industrial area near Neve Dekalim and said an Israeli bus came under Palestinian fire.
Also, on Sunday night, the Israeli army launched rockets at the Palestinian refugee camp of Aida near Bethlehem after an attack on the Gilo settlement in east Jerusalem, military sources told Haaretz, adding that no injuries were reported.
Earlier, the army said a bus transporting Palestinian workers to the same area had been shot at and that its soldiers had returned fire.
In the West Bank, the army said two explosive devices blew up near a military convoy near the town of Jenin in the far north of the West Bank.
It also said shots were fired from a passing car at the Halamish settlement near the West Bank town of Ramallah.
Meanwhile, Haaretz reported that an explosive device was detonated Monday morning on the fence separating Israel and the Gaza Strip, just north of the Kissufim checkpoint crossing. There were no injuries, said the paper - Albawaba.com
© 2001 Al Bawaba (www.albawaba.com )