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Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 18 June 2018

Palestinian prime suspect in rabbi's murder was shot, Israeli forces say

Security forces will catch whoever tries to attack Israeli citizens: Netanyahu 

A general view of the illegal outpost settlement of Havat Gilad in the West Bank, January 20, 2018. Abir Sultan / EPA
A general view of the illegal outpost settlement of Havat Gilad in the West Bank, January 20, 2018. Abir Sultan / EPA

A Palestinian man suspected of killing a rabbi last month near a Jewish settlement in the West Bank was shot dead, the authorities said on Tuesday.

Ahmad Jarrar was killed in the northern West Bank town of Yamoun, where he had been hiding, according to the Shin Bet security service.

It described him as an “active” participant in the January 9 murder of 35-year-old Rabbi Raziel Shevah, who was killed in a drive-by shooting near his home in the unauthorised settlement outpost near the city of Nablus.

Last month, Israeli forces shot dead a Palestinian suspected of involvement in the rabbi's killing in Jenin, about 35 kilometres north of Havat Gilad.

On Sunday, a Palestinian teenager was shot and killed by Israeli soldiers in the West Bank village of Burqin during a raid for suspects in the shooting of Shevah.

Ahmad Abu Obeid, 19, was shot in the head.

According to tally by the Palestinian news agency, Maan, Obeid was the ninth Palestinian to be killed by Israeli forces this year, four of whom were 16 years old.

Tuesday's killing came a day after a Palestinian stabbed to death an Israeli man, 29-year-old Itamar Ben Gal, at a bus stop near the entrance to the West Bank settlement of Ariel, before fleeing the scene.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu praised Tuesday's operation and vowed that the killer of Mr Ben Gal would also be pursued.

"The security forces will catch whoever tries to attack Israeli citizens and we will deal with them to the fullest extent of the law," he said.

There has been a spike in Palestinian violence since President Donald Trump's December 6 recognition of Jerusalem as Israel's capital. The move sparked outrage across the Muslim world, where it was seen as the United States taking Israel's side on the most contentious issue of the decades-old conflict.

Palestinian demonstrators have clashed with Israeli troops in the West Bank and along the Gaza-Israeli border, and 19 Palestinians have been killed in the violence since Trump's announcement.

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