Dozens of Palestinians have been wounded in separate incidents in the occupied West Bank, sources told a news agency as tensions increase amid the intensifying Israeli bombardment of the Gaza Strip.
At least eight Palestinians were wounded on Thursday when a group of settlers from an illegal settlement attacked Duwwaneh village near Hebron, Al Jazeera’s Nida Ibrahim reporting from Ramallah said. Four of them needed hospitalization, according to local sources.
Separately, at least 34 Palestinians were wounded in confrontations with the Israeli army overnight in various locations across the West Bank, Ibrahim added. The latest round of injuries occurred as Palestinians in the occupied West Bank took to the streets in solidarity with Palestinians in the Gaza Strip.
On Wednesday, Palestinian teenager Rashid Abu Arreh was fatally shot by the Israeli army in Tubas, north of Nablus, according to the Palestinian Health Ministry. Hours earlier, another 26-year-old civilian had been shot dead during protests against the Israeli army in the al-Fawwar refugee camp, medical sources said.
Ibrahim said the type and amount of Palestinian injuries in the occupied West Bank, which have mostly occurred in the district of Hebron, show the extent of the Israeli crackdown.
“It is an exceptionally high number of injuries by live fire, which is showing us that the situation could be escalating rather quickly”, Ibrahim said.
The Israeli military has stated that Hamas began firing rockets at Israel late on Monday, following days of protests of the expulsion of Palestinian families from the Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood in occupied East Jerusalem, resulting in Israeli police raids at the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound.
Israel launched a series of air attacks on the Gaza Strip that have killed at least 83 Palestinians, including 17 children, according to Palestinian health officials. At least seven Israelis have also been killed in the escalation.
The violence has also seen a spike in inter-communal violence in religiously “mixed” cities across Israel such as Lod, Acre, and Haifa, including attempted lynchings, the destruction of property, and the burning of religious sites.