The Israeli army on Sunday informed that three Palestinian gunmen were shot dead in the northern West Bank near Nablus. The armed gunmen opened fire on the Israeli soldiers, forcing the latter to return the favour.
“Three armed gunmen were neutralised during the exchange of fire and an additional armed gunman surrendered himself to the forces and was apprehended,” the army said in a statement.
The incident comes in the backdrop of Israeli forces neutralising three Palestinians in a raid in Jenin on Thursday.
“During the operation, shots were fired at the [Israeli] forces from the car of the wanted persons, after which we responded and killed three armed men who were in the car,” said the Israeli forces at the time.
This is not the first instance when violence has escalated in the region. Last month, Palestinian militants fired as many as six rockets from the Gaza Strip towards Israel’s southern region.
The firing of the projectiles came less than 24 hours after Israel carried out a rare daytime arrest operation that triggered fighting in the occupied West Bank, killing at least 11 people and wounding more than 100.
Experts dubbed it as one of the deadliest escalations in the occupied West Bank since 2005. Meanwhile, UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said the situation in the Palestinian territory was the ‘most combustible in a year’, adding that tensions remained ‘sky high’.
“Our immediate priority must be to prevent further escalation, reduce tensions and restore calm,” said Guterres.
Ever since Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu returned to power with his coalition of far-right allies, violence has intensified in the region.
Israel has been occupying Palestinian territory since the Six-Day War of 1967. The escalation in recent times, however, has made the situation tense in the region.
(With inputs from agencies)