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Palestinian boy, 13, shot and injured two Israeli men in East Jerusalem

Israeli soldiers respond to a shooting in East Jerusalem
Israeli soldiers respond to a shooting in East Jerusalem Copyright AFP
Copyright AFP
By Euronews with AFP, AP
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A Palestinian boy, aged 13, shot and injured an Israeli man and his adult son in East Jerusalem. The boy was shot and disarmed by bystanders and taken to hospital in handcuffs.

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A 13-year-old Palestinian boy opened fire in east Jerusalem on Saturday, wounding two Israelis, officials said.

A father and son, aged 47 and 23, were wounded in the shooting in the Palestinian neighbourhood of Silwan in east Jerusalem.

Bystanders shot the teenager and disarmed him. Police confiscated his weapon and took him to hospital.

Both Israeli men were fully conscious and in moderate to serious condition in the hospital, the medics added.

East Jerusalem

Video showed police escorting a wounded teen, wearing nothing but underwear, away from the scene and onto a stretcher, his hands cuffed behind his back. Authorities taped off the street, emergency vehicles and security forces swarmed the area and helicopters whirled overhead.

“He waited to ambush civilians on the holy Sabbath day,” Israeli police spokesman Dean Elsdunne told The Associated Press, adding that the teenager opened fire on a group of five civilians. Security footage showed the victims to be observant Jews, wearing skullcaps and tzitzit, or knotted ritual tassels.

The Israeli army said it had deployed another battalion to the West Bank on Saturday, adding hundreds more troops to a presence already on heightened alert in the occupied territory.

In the Jenin refugee camp, the site of an Israeli military raid on Thursday in which nine people died, footage showed Palestinians dancing and cheering in celebration of the shooting on Saturday.

On Friday, a Palestinian gunman killed at least seven people, including a 70-year-old woman, in a Jewish settlement in east Jerusalem, an area captured by Israel in 1967 and later annexed in a move not internationally recognised. The 21-year-old gunman was shot and killed at the scene.

Israel's new government

The attacks pose a pivotal test for Israel’s new far-right government.

Prime Minister Benjamin said he would convene his Security Cabinet later, after the Sabbath, which ends at sundown, to discuss a further response to Friday’s shooting.

Police arrested 42 of his family members and neighbours for questioning in the At-Tur neighbourhood.

Police Chief Kobi Shabtai permanently moved a force, similar to a S.W.A.T. team, in the city and beefed up forces, instructing police to work 12-hour shifts. He urged the public to call a hotline if they see anything suspicious.

Israeli army raid

Thursday's army raid, the deadliest single incursion in the West Bank since 2002, followed a particularly bloody month that saw at least 30 Palestinians, militants and civilians, killed in confrontations with Israelis in the West Bank, according to a tally by the AP.

Last year, as the Israeli military intensified its arrest raids following a string of deadly Palestinian attacks within Israel, at least 150 Palestinians were killed in the occupied West Bank and east Jerusalem. It was the highest annual death toll for more than a decade and a half. Thirty people were killed in Palestinian attacks against Israelis last year.

Israel says most of the dead were militants. But youths protesting the incursions and others not involved in the confrontations also have been killed.

The Israeli military contends its raids are meant to dismantle militant networks and thwart attacks. But Palestinians say they further entrench Israel’s 55-year, open-ended occupation of the West Bank, captured along with east Jerusalem and the Gaza Strip in the 1967 Mideast war. The Palestinians demand east Jerusalem as the capital of a future independent state, and much of the world considers it illegally occupied. Israel claims Jerusalem as its united, sovereign capital.

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