Middle East Eye / February 26, 2023
Assailant rammed vehicle and opened fire in the town of Hawara, as violence continues despite Jordan de-escalation talks.
Two Jewish settlers were killed by a Palestinian gunman near the occupied West Bank city of Nablus on Sunday, according to Israeli officials.
The two were shot dead in their car while driving through the Palestinian town of Hawara.
The assailant rammed the vehicle, before shooting at the two and fleeing the scene, sources told Haaretz. Israel’s military said it was pursuing the gunman.
There were no immediate claims of responsibility for the attack.
It comes on the same day that Israeli and Palestinian leadership began talks in Jordan, following a deadly escalation in violence in the occupied West Bank.
Israeli forces killed 11 Palestinians, including a child and three elderly people, and wounded 100 others on Wednesday during a military raid in the occupied West Bank city of Nablus.
More than 60 Israeli military vehicles stormed Nablus after an undercover force was spotted in the historic Old City, eyewitnesses told Middle East Eye.
“It was very scary… We could hear the sounds of explosions and people screaming in the street, and many of us started crying and praying to God to protect the city and its residents,” Nablus resident Nabeela Suliman told MEE.
The raid, which lasted for four hours, focused on a building in the city that reportedly housed Palestinian resistance fighters.
“The Hawara operation is a natural response to the occupation’s crimes, the latest of which was the Nablus massacre,” a spokesperson for Hamas said on Sunday.
“The resistance in the West Bank will remain present and escalate, and no plan or summit will be able to stop it.”
Israel’s military launched air strikes on the Gaza Strip on Thursday morning, after rockets were fired from the besieged Palestinian enclave following the Nablus raid.
At least 62 Palestinians have been killed by Israelis this year, at a rate of more than one fatality per day.
This follows a steep increase in violence in 2022 when at least 167 Palestinians were killed in the West Bank and East Jerusalem, the highest death toll in those territories in a single year since the Second Intifada.