Israeli troops kill 3 Palestinians, dozens wounded in West Bank

Israeli troops kill 3 Palestinians, dozens wounded in West Bank

Israeli troops have killed three Palestinians and wounded dozens of others in a shoot-out on Tuesday during an arrest raid in the city of Nablus in the occupied West Bank, according to the Palestinian Health Ministry.

The shootout came a day after a ceasefire ended three days of fighting between Israel and the Palestinian Islamic Jihad militant group in the Gaza Strip.

Israeli police said security forces encircled the home of Ibrahim al-Nabulsi, who was wanted for a string of shootings in the West Bank earlier this year.

They confirmed that al-Nabulsi and another Palestinian militant were killed in a shoot-out at the scene, and that troops found arms and explosives in his home.

The Israeli military said troops had been attacked by Palestinians throwing rocks and explosives, and that soldiers responded with live fire.

Palestinians were shot, but did not elaborate on their condition.

The Palestinian Health Ministry said three people were killed - al-Nabulsi, Islam Sabouh and Hussein Jamal Taha - and at least 40 were wounded.

Israel has carried out near nightly arrests in the West Bank in recent months as part of a crackdown on Palestinian militant groups - particularly Islamic Jihad - after a string of deadly attacks on Israelis earlier this year that left 19 people dead.

Dozens of Palestinians have been killed in clashes with Israeli troops during these arrest raids.

Last week Israel arrested Bassam al-Saadi, a senior Islamic Jihad militant in the West Bank city of Jenin, during one of its nightly operations.

Israel launched a series of strikes on Islamic Jihad targets in the Gaza Strip in response to an imminent threat by the militant group, the group said it was going on alert, and on Friday Israel said it had launched a series of strikes on Islamic Jihad targets in the Gaza Strip.

During the three days of the Gaza fighting, at least 46 Palestinians were killed, including 16 children and four women, and 311 were wounded, the Palestinian Health Ministry said.

Of those killed, 12 were Islamic Jihad militants, one of whom was from a smaller armed group, and two were Hamas-affiliated policemen who were not taking part in the fighting, according to the armed factions.

Israel estimated that a total of 47 Palestinians were killed, including 14 killed by misfired Islamic Jihad rockets.

It said 20 militants and seven civilians died in Israeli air strikes and it was still investigating six deaths.

Israel's caretaker prime minister, Yair Lapid, applauded the cooperation of Israeli security personnel and said that the killing of al-Nabulsi was another step in our uncompromising struggle against terrorism Nabil Abu Rdeneh, a spokesman for Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, and accused the Israeli government of shedding Palestinian blood ahead of November parliamentary elections.

Israel captured the West Bank in 1967 and views the area as the biblical and historical heartland of the Jewish people. It has built dozens of settlements, now home to more than 400,000 Israelis.

The Palestinians and much of the international community consider Israel's West Bank settlements a violation of international law and an obstacle to a peaceful resolution of the decades-long conflict.