A Palestinian teen was killed Tuesday during an Israeli army raid in a refugee camp in the northern West Bank, Palestinian officials said. The death was the latest in an almost year-long surge in Israeli-Palestinian violence that shows no signs of abating. The Israeli military said it carried out raids across the occupied West Bank overnight, and that during an operation in the Faraa refugee camp, a person approached troops with an explosive device.
The army said that soldiers shot the person. The official Palestinian news agency, Wafa, reported that local residents clashed with Israeli soldiers, who shot at them. The Palestinian Health Ministry said that Mahmoud Al-Aydi, 17, died from a bullet wound to the head.
Tensions have mounted for months as Israel has conducted nightly arrest raids in the West Bank, which were prompted by a spate of Palestinian attacks on Israelis last spring. Some 30 people were killed in Israel by Palestinians in 2022, and at least 12 others died in attacks so far in 2023.
On Monday, an Israeli Border Police officer died after he was stabbed by a Palestinian teen in east Jerusalem. Police said a security guard opened fire, apparently shooting 1st Sgt. Asil Su’ad. Su’ad, a Bedouin Arab serving in Israel’s paramilitary police force, was to be laid to rest in northern Israel on Tuesday.
Nearly 150 Palestinians were killed last year in the West Bank and east Jerusalem, making it the deadliest year in those areas since 2004, according to figures by the Israeli rights group B’Tselem. At least 48 Palestinians have been killed by Israeli troops since the start of this year.
Israel says that most of those killed have been militants but others — including youths protesting the incursions and other people not involved in confrontations — have also been killed.
Israel says the military raids are meant to dismantle militant networks and thwart future attacks while the Palestinians view them as further entrenchment of Israel’s open-ended, 55-year occupation. Israel captured the West Bank, east Jerusalem and the Gaza Strip in the 1967 Mideast war, territories the Palestinians claim for their hoped-for independent state.