Violence in the West Bank, where millions of Palestinians live under Israeli military occupation, continues to simmer amid the war in Gaza. At least 128 Palestinians have been killed by Israeli security forces or civilians in the West Bank since Oct. 7, according to the United Nations.
On Thursday, an Israeli settler was killed when Palestinians opened fire on his car as he drove home from military duty, according to the Israeli military and medics. The local settler regional council identified the victim as Elhanan Klein, 29, a father of three and reservist.
No Palestinian armed group immediately claimed responsibility for the shooting
At least three Palestinians were killed in Israeli military raids across the West Bank overnight, including a 14-year-old, the Palestinian Authority Health Ministry said on Thursday. Another 14-year-old died from wounds sustained earlier this week, the ministry reported.
The Israeli military did not immediately comment on the deaths. Israeli troops have conducted nightly raids across the occupied territory to arrest Palestinians, many of them accused of Hamas membership, and have engaged in gun battles with militants.
Such confrontations have long roiled the West Bank, but the violence has intensified over the last three weeks, more than doubling to seven incidents a day, on average, compared with three incidents a day since the start of 2023, according to U.N. statistics.
An increasing number of Israeli communities have taken root in the West Bank, which Israel has occupied since 1967. The settlements cut into land Palestinians have title to and also undermine the territory needed for any two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, fanning tensions in the region.