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West Bank: Two Palestinians killed after new clashes with settlers

Tensions remain high in the West Bank, two days after the death of a young Israeli shepherd sparked renewed violence. Two young Palestinians were shot dead in northern Occupied Palestinian Territory on Monday after clashes with Israeli settlers, the Palestinian Authority’s health ministry said.

The two victims, aged 21 and 30, were killed in the Khirbet al-Tawil area, a village near Aqraba, a commune located about fifteen kilometers southeast of Nablus. Salah Bani Jaber, the commune’s mayor, said “dozens of settlers” attacked the small town on Monday evening, “attacking residents and opening fire on residents, resulting in the death of two citizens.”

VIDEO. Smoke billows from car as settlers attack West Bank village

For its part, the Israeli army reported in a press release about “violent exchanges between Israeli citizens and Palestinians” in the area. The clashes occurred after a “Palestinian suspect attacked an Israeli shepherd,” the army said, adding that soldiers sent to the scene “acted to break up a brutal firefight.” “Initial investigations suggest that the fatal shots” that struck the two Palestinians “were not fired by the army,” the latter said.

Serious reprisals after suspicious death

On March 19, a Palestinian was killed in front of his home in the city of the same name in Khirbet al-Tawil. The city’s mayor blamed Israeli settlers for the attack, and the Israeli army suggested one of its soldiers was behind the fatal shooting.

Since the start of the war in the Gaza Strip, sparked by the Hamas attack on Israel on October 7, violence has intensified in the occupied West Bank. The death this weekend of an Israeli teenager killed under unknown circumstances in the territory sparked a major crackdown by settlers who attacked villages and burned Palestinian homes and cars over the weekend, killing at least two people.

At least 468 Palestinians have been killed by Israeli soldiers or settlers in the West Bank since the war began, according to the Palestinian Authority. Israeli settlements in the occupied West Bank, home to more than 490,000 Israelis, are illegal under international law.

Source: Le Parisien

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