Israeli military killed 3 wanted Palestinians in the West Bank

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TEL AVIV, Israel – Israeli soldiers killed three Palestinians wanted in connection with a deadly attack against Israelis, the Israeli military said Thursday, the latest bloodshed in an unrelenting wave of violence.

The army said the men were behind an attack last month on a car near a Jewish settlement in the West Bank that killed a British-Israeli mother and two of her daughters.

The army said it entered the heart of the flashpoint city of Nablus in the West Bank early Thursday, and in fierce fighting killed three suspects, two of whom it said were militants linked to Hamas. He identified the men as Hassan Katnani, Moaz Masri and Ibrahim Hura.

The Palestinian Ministry of Health said three people were killed but did not immediately identify them.

The violence in Nablus comes at a very sensitive time in the region, days after a prominent Palestinian prisoner who was on a long hunger strike died in Israeli custody. His death set off a volley of rockets from militants in Gaza and airstrikes in the coastal enclave that killed one man.

Israel has been carrying out almost nightly raids on villages, towns and cities in the West Bank for more than a year in an operation prompted by a wave of Palestinian attacks against Israel in last year Israel says the raids are to eliminate militant networks and prevent future attacks. The Palestinians see the attacks as a further extension of Israel’s 56-year open occupation of land they seek for a future independent state.

The raids were met with an increase in Palestinian attacks.

About 250 Palestinians have been killed by Israeli fire since the raids were launched. Israel says the majority have been terrorists, but youths who were throwing stones and people who were not involved in the riots were also killed.

Meanwhile, nearly 50 people were killed in Palestinian attacks against Israelis.

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