RAMALLAH: Israeli troops shot dead a 15-year-old Palestinian and critically wounded another child in the occupied West Bank Thursday, the Palestinian health ministry said, with the army reporting they came under attack.
Violence flared in the northern occupied West Bank town of Azzun when troops arrived to search suspects after fireworks were launched at Israeli vehicles driving past, the army said.
“Several suspects hurled Molotov cocktails at the soldiers”, the army said in a statement. “The soldiers responded with live ammunition.”
The Palestinian health ministry said in a statement that Muhammad Nidal Salim, 15, was “killed by bullets in the back fired at him by the occupation (Israeli) soldiers”.
Two others were wounded, including a child in critical condition, the ministry added, without giving their ages.
The army said it was “aware of reports stating that some of those suspects were injured” and noted that no Israeli soldiers were hurt, but gave no further details.
The latest death came amid a surge in violence in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, and specifically in the occupied West Bank, which Israel has occupied since the Six-Day War of 1967.
Late on Sunday, the Palestinian town of Huwara came under attack by Israeli settlers, hours after two settlers were shot dead as they drove through the northern occupied West Bank town.
Hundreds of settlers set homes and cars ablaze and hurled stones in Huwara overnight, and a Palestinian man was killed in the nearby village of Zaatara.
On Monday, gunmen shot dead an Israeli-American motorist, and on Wednesday Israeli forces searching for suspects in the Aqabat Jabr refugee camp near Jericho killed a Palestinian man.
Since the start of the year, the Israeli-Palestinian conflict has claimed the lives of 65 Palestinian adults and children.
Thirteen Israeli adults and children, including members of the security forces and civilians, and one Ukrainian civilian have been killed over the same period, according to an AFP tally based on official sources from both sides.
On Sunday, Israeli and Palestinian officials pledged in a joint statement to “prevent further violence” and “commit to de-escalation” following talks in Jordan.