2 Palestinians killed, Israeli soldier wounded in West Bank raid

Ramallah, Feb 19 (UNI) Two Palestinians were killed and an Israeli soldier was seriously wounded in a gun battle during an Israeli raid on a refugee camp in the occupied West Bank on Sunday, Palestinian and Israeli officials said.

The Palestinian Health Ministry identified the dead as Nabil Amer, 19, and Mohammed Al-Awfi, 36, who were shot by Israeli troops in the Tulkarm camp. It said that Israel had seized Al-Awfi’s body.

Palestinian security sources said Israeli forces entered the camp and cordoned it off, sparking clashes with local youths. They added that the Israeli troops surrounded a house in the camp, where they deployed snipers and helicopters.

Israeli public radio said the raid, carried out by the army, the police, and the Shin Bet security service, targeted a senior militant in Tulkarm and a senior Hamas official, along with three other suspects.

It said the police, acting on Shin Bet intelligence, arrested Al-Awfi, who the Israeli side said was a wanted man in Tulkarm and was involved in shooting attacks on Israeli forces and settlers. He was also suspected of killing Tulkarm residents who were accused of collaborating with Israel, the Israeli radio added.

The radio said Al-Awfi was killed after exchanging fire with the troops, who confiscated his weapons. It said another gunman was also killed and a third was wounded when they opened fire and threw explosives at the soldiers.

It said one Israeli soldier was seriously injured by gunfire and taken to hospital.

More than 395 Palestinians have been killed by Israeli fire in the West Bank since Oct. 7, 2023, the Palestinian Health Ministry said.

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