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Israel closes entrances to Bethlehem-area towns after shooting near Israeli settlement

July 22, 2016 4:15 P.M. (Updated: July 24, 2016 8:04 P.M.)
BETHLEHEM (Ma'an) -- Israeli forces Friday closed several entrances to villages and towns in the eastern and southeastern parts of the occupied West Bank district of Bethlehem with large cement blocks following a shooting on an Israeli settler’s car Thursday night.

Israeli forces set up several checkpoints in the surrounding villages and towns in the district, including one at the entrance of the town of Beit Sahour and the entrances to villages in the eastern countryside of Bethlehem, causing heavy traffic.

Israeli forces also closed the entrance to the town of Janata, two roads leading to the town of Zaatara, and the villages of al-Khas and Marah Rabah in southeastern Bethlehem.

An Israeli army spokesperson told Ma’an she would look into reports on the closures.

A group of armed Palestinians reportedly opened fire from their car at an Israeli settler’s vehicle that was passing near the illegal Har Homa settlement on Thursday night.

An Israeli army spokesperson told Ma'an that the vehicle sustained damage, but no injuries were reported. However, she could not confirm the number of Israelis who were in the vehicle.

Israeli forces searched the area for suspects, and carried out a raid on the eastern entrance of Beit Sahour, as Israeli soldiers searched and confiscated security cameras following the incident.

An Israeli army spokesperson told Ma'an that the military search campaign is still ongoing.

More than 220 Palestinians have been killed by Israelis and some 32 Israelis have been killed by Palestinians since a wave of unrest first swept across the occupied Palestinian territory and Israel in October.The unrest has been marked by a surge of small-scale attacks carried out by Palestinian individuals -- predominantly on Israeli military targets.
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