Palestinians Wounded as Clashes Flare in West Bank, Gaza

Published December 19th, 2000 - 02:00 GMT

At least five Palestinians were wounded in separate clashes with Israeli soldiers in the West Bank and Gaza Strip on Tuesday, witnesses and hospital officials said. 

Three Palestinians were injured when the Israeli army opened fire on a group of demonstrators protesting at the closure of a road near the West Bank town of Hebron by Jewish settlers, witnesses said. 

Clashes erupted in an Israel-controlled area in the divided city after settlers blocked the road leading from Hebron to the Palestinian village of Siir to the north, they said. 

One Palestinian was hit with live ammunition and another two with rubber-coated steel bullets. 

In the Gaza Strip, two Palestinians were wounded after being shot by Israeli troops at the industrial zone near the Erez checkpoint into Israel, witnesses and hospital officials said. 

Palestinians said protests flared after workers at the Israeli-controlled zone in the north of the Gaza Strip were ordered to undergo searches by sniffer dogs. 

Elsewhere in Gaza, witnesses said Israeli army bulldozers razed a Palestinian house near the Jewish settlement of Gush Katif. 

The army gave no reason for the destruction of the eight-room house, which the witnesses said was home to 15 people. 

In Rafah, in the southern Gaza Strip, witnesses said three Palestinians in a car were arrested by Israelis after an exchange of gunfire during which Israeli tanks fired three shells. 

In the northern West Bank, meanwhile, Palestinians opened fire on an Israeli vehicle and set off an explosive charge near the settlement of Itamar on Tuesday night, an Israeli military spokesman said. 

He added that there were no casualties in that incident -- HEBRON (AFP)  


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