A 31-year-old Palestinian was seriously wounded in Jerusalem early Wednesday in a stabbing that he said was perpetrated by religious Jews. The victim told police the incident started when four Jews wearing skullcaps approached him near an ultra-Orthodox neighborhood. They asked him for the time, and then proceeded to stab him in the back repeatedly.
A passerby who witnessed the stabbing subsequently called a police patrol car to the scene.
Meanwhile, Israeli settlers on Wednesday braced for a forceful eviction after Israel declared a closed military area around a house in the West Bank city of Hebron they occupy in defiance of a court order. The military decree followed violent clashes involving some residents of the controversial house and their far right-wing followers who hurled rocks at Palestinians, security forces, homes and cars and desecrated Muslim tombstones.
"The sector around the house has been decreed a closed military zone," a military spokesman said on Wednesday, adding that Israelis are now barred from entering the Palestinian areas of the city.
The Israeli Haaretz daily suggested that a forceful eviction was likely this week.
The military order also aims to prevent a repeat of Tuesday's clashes which media said left 20 Palestinians and 18 Israelis injured.