Israeli troops kill two Palestinians in the West Bank


Israeli occupation soldiers on Tuesday killed two Palestinians whom Israel accuses of being involved in the June murder of three Israeli settlers in the West Bank.

Amer Abu Eisha and Marwan Qawasmeh were killed in an alleged “exchange of fire” in the southern West Bank city of Hebron, the army said.

The two men were in a house in Hebron and gunfire broke out during an arrest operation by the Shin Bet internal security services and the army’s anti-terror unit, it indicated in a statement.

Residents told AFP they heard an exchange of fire during the assault, and that the army had also broken down the doors of several shops in the area.

Local youths threw stones at the soldiers near the scene of the raid, and following the shooting, a general strike was being observed across the city.

The suspects “no longer pose a threat to Israeli civilians,” army spokesman Lieutenant Colonel Peter Lerner said on Twitter, posting pictures of the two men.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu praised the operation, saying the suspects had been “dealt with.”

“I said that whoever perpetrated the kidnapping and murder of our boys would bear the consequences… that we would pursue the enemy, find them and not return until they had been dealt with,” he said in a statement.

The army had already partially destroyed the two men’s homes on July 1, a day after the teenagers’ bodies were found. The demolitions were completed in August.

The June abduction of Frenkel, Gilad Shaer and Eyal Yifrach from a hitchhiking stop near Hebron sparked a huge Israeli search operation in which hundreds of Palestinians were arrested and at least five killed.

Israel immediately blamed the kidnappings on Hamas militants.

In July, Israeli settlers killed Palestinian teenager Mohammed Abu Khdeir by setting him on fire.

On August 14, a Palestinian man was killed after being knocked down by an Israeli settler car near an illegal settlement in the central West Bank.

Similarly, on August 7, a settler ran over and injured an 8-year old Palestinian girl with their car in the southern West Bank.