Deadly West Bank shooting after Israel airstrikes in Lebanon, Gaza
(Update: changes headline, lede, adds West Bank shootings)
Jerusalem, Apr 7 (EFE).- Two Israeli women were killed and a third was seriously wounded in a suspected gun attack in the northern West Bank, Israeli officials said Friday.
A spokesman for the Magen David Adom emergency service said the incident near the town of Hamra was being investigated as a “terrorist attack”, the terminology used by Israel for attacks by Palestinians.
According to MDA, paramedics pronounced two women in their 20s dead at the scene and provided medical treatment to a 45-year-old woman in a serious condition. She has been flown by helicopter to hospital in Jerusalem.
Preliminary reports from medical and army sources said the women were shot after their vehicle crashed with a Palestinian car, with military officials saying troops identified “numerous bullet holes” on the Israeli car.
Israeli soldiers have set up roadblocks in the area as part of the search for the perpetrators, who left their vehicle behind and fled on foot, according to a military spokesman.
The incident comes amid escalating tensions between Israelis and Palestinians over the past several months, which have spiked again in recent days.
Earlier on Friday morning, an Israeli soldier was reportedly injured in a shooting incident.
On Wednesday, police and Muslim worshippers clashed in east Jerusalem’s Al Aqsa mosque. More than 30 Palestinians were injured and 350 were arrested.
That incident was followed Palestinian militias in the Gaza Strip and southern Lebanon firing missiles at Israel.
Since Wednesday, more than 60 shells have been fired into Israeli territory from Gaza and 36 from Lebanon, while Israel has bombed targets of the Palestinian Islamist movement Hamas in both the Gaza Strip and Lebanon.
The escalating violence comes on the third Friday of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan – which this year coincides with the Jewish holiday of Passover and Good Friday – a particularly tense day each year in Jerusalem that sees hundreds of thousands of Palestinians come to the Al-Aqsa mosque.
This week’s incidents are the latest in a wave of deadly violence in the region amid heightened tensions between Israelis and Palestinians.
Over 90 Palestinians have died this year in military operations, Palestinian-led attacks and clashes with Israeli troops, the deadliest start to the year in the West Bank since 2000, while at least 17 Israelis have died in 2023. EFE