Israeli troops kill Palestinian after highway stabbing

Victim had attacked an Israeli citizen at a petrol station in West Bank near Jerusalem

File photograph of Israeli border police. Photograph: Abed Omar Qusini/Reuters

File photograph of Israeli border police. Photograph: Abed Omar Qusini/Reuters

 

Israeli troops shot dead a Palestinian who stabbed an Israeli man at a petrol station along a main highway in the occupied West Bank near Jerusalem on Sunday, police said.

The 26-year-old Israeli civilian was lightly hurt and taken to hospital following the incident, police spokeswoman Luba Samri said, adding that the Palestinian attacker had come from a village near highway 443, one of two major routes that connect Jerusalem and Tel Aviv.

With peace talks stalled since April 2014, grassroots violence has simmered in the West Bank and adjacent East Jerusalem, among the territories Israel captured in the 1967 Middle East war and where Palestinians seek statehood.

Last month, suspected Jewish attackers torched a Palestinian home in the West Bank, killing an 18-month-old boy and his father and seriously injuring his mother and brother, in an incident that has greatly heightened tensions.

Last week, two Israelis were hurt when a petrol bomb was thrown at their vehicle in East Jerusalem, on a turnoff further along the same route where Sunday’s attack took place.

Israel jailed two suspected Jewish militants without trial on Sunday, the second time the measure has been used to detain Israeli citizens since the torching in the West Bank.

Meir Ettinger and Eviatar Slonim were placed in “administrative detention” for six months, defence minister Moshe Yaalon said in a statement.

A third man, Mordechai Meyer, was similarly detained on Tuesday.

Israel holds hundreds of Palestinians in administrative detention.

Detention without trial

Israel defends its use of detention without trial, saying it is needed to stem violence and allow for further investigation in cases where there is insufficient evidence to prosecute, or where going to court would risk exposing secret informants.

Mr Yaalon accused Ettinger and Slonim of “involvement in activity by an extremist Jewish group”.

He also said that Meyer had been involved in “recent terrorist attacks as part of a Jewish terror group”.

No specific incidents were mentioned.

Honenu, a group of Israeli lawyers representing the three detainees, condemned the use of detention without trial.

“Right now there are three detentions. In the coming days it could be 30, and we could end up with 300,” one of the lawyers, Aaron Roze, told Israel Radio. “These orders endanger the entire justice system.”

Reuters