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Israeli kills 2 Palestinians near Hebron

June 17, 2012 11:58 A.M. (Updated: June 18, 2012 8:05 P.M.)
HEBRON (Ma'an) -- An Israeli civilian shot and killed two Palestinians on Sunday in the Hebron village of al-Samu, Palestinian medics and Israeli officials said.

Anwar Abed Rabbo, 27, from Yatta, and Naeem al-Najjar, 32, from nearby Idhna, were killed, and a third unidentified man was injured when an Israeli opened fire on them, Palestinian medics said.

Israeli police spokesman Mickey Rosenfeld told Ma'an that a tow truck driver was attacked by two Palestinians in the south Hebron hills.

The driver "drew his weapon and fired a number of shots at the suspects," he said, in what was thought to have been an attempted robbery.

Al-Najjar was shot in the head and neck and Abed Rabbo in the chest, medics told Ma'an.

The driver was lightly injured and treated in a Beersheva hospital, Rosenfeld said.

Israeli media reported that the truck driver is from southern Israeli city Ashkelon. Medics had earlier said that the Israeli civilian involved in the incident was a settler.

A spokesman for Palestinian security forces, Adnan Dmeiri, said he was aware of the deaths but did not have further details because the shooting took place in an Israeli-run area out of bounds to Palestinian police under interim peace deals.

Head of Yatta municipality Zahran Abu Qbetta told Ma'an that the two men were on their way to work at the time of the shooting.

Israeli forces prevented ambulances from accessing the scene, claiming that it was a closed military zone, Red Crescent official Nasser Kabaja told Ma'an.

Settlers and other Israelis who travel regularly in the occupied West Bank are licensed to carry guns.

Reuters contributed to this report
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