Second Israeli dies of wounds from West Bank shooting attack

Israeli forces on Monday continued to hunt a Palestinian they said killed two people and injured a third near the illegal Jewish settlement of Ariel in the occupied West Bank on Sunday.

People attend the funeral of 47-year-old Rabbi Achiad Ettinger in the settlement of Eli in West Bank, on March 18, 2019.

Israel has come under harsh condemnation over the past several years for its response to attacks committed by Palestinians on Israelis, which rights groups have said amounted to "collective punishment" on family members and entire communities in a clear violation of global law.

He then drove to the nearby Gitai Avishar Junction, where he shot a soldier standing at a hitch-hiking post.

The army said a second Israeli soldier was in a serious condition in hospital with bullet wounds.

"We know the attacker's identity ... and security forces are in a close pursuit after him", Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said as he visited the site of the shooting attack.

Overnight, Israeli forces arrested the father and the brother of the assailant, local media reported.

The assailant fatally stabbed a 19-year-old soldier, SSgt Gal Keidan, then stole his weapon and fired at passing cars and other soldiers before escaping.

The father of 12 from the nearby Aley Zahav settlementserved for three years as dean of the Oz V'Emunah hesder yeshiva in the Neve Sha'anan neighborhood in southern Tel Aviv.

Al-Ayyam and al-Hayat al-Jadida added in this regard that Israeli forces sealed and detained a number of Palestinians from several northern West Bank towns and villages, mainly Bruqin, Az-Zawiya and Kafr Ad-Dik.

Palestinians, many of them individuals without known associations with militant groups, carried out a wave of attacks in the West Bank in late 2015 and 2016, but the frequency of such incidents has since decreased.

We were told explicitly that we were waging psychological war, that we were there to intimidate them. Troops went house to house to search for the gunman and the military said it had surveyed the suspect's home for demolition - a longstanding Israeli tactic that it argues is to deter attacks.

Palestinian officials have said the Palestinians will not accept any of the taxes Israel gathers for the PA, if it does not transfer the full amount to Ramallah.

Sunday's incident follows two deadly shootings by Palestinians against Israelis in December. Gantz accused Regev of using Israeli deaths for "political propaganda". Israel has also bombed Gaza in response to periodic rocket fire from the strip's rulers, Hamas. The Trump administration has cut hundreds of millions of dollars in aid to the Palestinians amid the PA's boycott of the White House for recognizing Jerusalem as Israel's capital.

  • Joey Payne