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Israeli army kills Palestinian at checkpoint, officials say

JERUSALEM (AP) — The Palestinian health ministry said Israeli forces shot and killed a Palestinian on Friday at a checkpoint in the occupied West Bank, the latest bloodshed in the Israeli-Palestinian flare-up.

The Israeli military said the man, identified by Palestinians as Abdullah Qalalweh, 25, approached troops at Hawara checkpoint near the city of Nablus, refusing orders to stop. The military said soldiers fired warning shots into the air before a soldier shot the man and killed him.

Violence has spiked in recent days, with an Israeli military raid on a militant stronghold in the West Bank refugee camp of Jenin last week killing 10 people, most of them militants. A Palestinian gunman in a shooting attack Saturday in an east Jerusalem Jewish settlement outside a synagogue killed seven people.

The latest shooting brings to 36 the number of Palestinians killed by Israeli troops this year. Last year was the deadliest since 2004, with nearly 150 Palestinians killed in the West Bank and east Jerusalem. Israel intensified its raids in the West Bank after 19 Israelis were killed in a string of Palestinian attacks in the spring of 2022. In total, 30 people were killed in Palestinian attacks against Israelis last 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.

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