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4 injured in Nablus clashes with Israeli forces

April 30, 2013 4:11 P.M. (Updated: May 1, 2013 5:32 P.M.)
NABLUS (Ma'an) -- Violent clashes erupted Tuesday between young Palestinians and Israeli troops in Urif, after settlers attacked a mosque in the northern West Bank village.

Israeli forces showered Palestinian protesters with tear gas, plastic-coated bullets and stun grenades, witnesses told Ma'an.

Ghassan Daghlas, a Palestinian Authority official who monitors settlement activity, said four Palestinians were injured and taken to the Rafedia Hospital in Nablus for treatment.

Khalid Safadi and Husam Abdul-Fattah were shot in the head by plastic-coated bullets, and Ahmad Foksh was shot in the foot. Adel Safadi was hit in the face by a high-velocity tear gas canister, Daghlas said.

Earlier Tuesday, Israeli settlers attacked the al-Ribat Mosque in Urif and damaged its interior.

The PA minister of religious affairs, Mahmoud al-Habbash, condemned the attack and said the Israeli government encouraged settler violence by providing soldiers to protect them.

An Israeli military spokeswoman told Ma'an that around 40 Israelis had hurled rocks at Palestinian vehicles in Urif, wounding three Palestinians. Israeli soldiers dispersed the riot, she said.

The PA Education Ministry canceled school trips on Wednesday after settlers attacked school buses in the West Bank, injuring five school girls.

Masked settlers burned tires at road junctions in Nablus, hurled stones at Palestinian cars, and set fire to dozens of olive trees following the fatal stabbing of a settler earlier in the day.

PA official Ghassan Daghlas urged Palestinians to exercise extreme caution while driving near settlements, adding that he expects more attacks to take place during the day.

A settler was stabbed to death as he waited at a hitchhiking spot south of Nablus in the occupied West Bank on Tuesday.

Israeli border police sped to the area and fired towards the attacker, who grabbed his victim's weapon and returned fire but was eventually disarmed and taken into custody, an Israeli police spokeswoman said.
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