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Israeli forces shoot Palestinian to death over 'attempted stab attack'

Family and friends carry the body of a Palestinian youth who was killed in clashes with Israeli forces near the West Bank town of Bethlehem on October 14, 2015. (AFP Photo)

Israeli forces have shot a Palestinian to death in the West Bank town of Beit Lahm (Bethlehem) over an 'attempted stab attack' on Israelis, reports say.

Israeli police said Tuesday that the unnamed Palestinian, who was armed with a knife, approached a hitchhiking spot near an Israeli settlement in the occupied West Bank and was shot dead by an Israeli soldier.

There were no Israeli casualties in the incident near the Gush Etzion settlement bloc, south of East al-Quds (Jerusalem), police added.

Israeli forces have increased such attacks against Palestinians in the occupied territories in recent weeks, alledging that the Palestinians seek to launch stab attacks on either Israeli forces or settlers.

Tuesday’s incident is the latest in nearly two months of violence in the occupied West Bank and the Gaza Strip.

A similar incident took place on Sunday morning at the Damascus Gate, which is one of the main entrances to the Old City of the al-Quds. The Palestinian victim in that incident was identified as Basim Salah, a youth from the West Bank city of Nablus.

Israeli police spokeswoman, Luba Samri, said the Palestinian was shot after he allegedly stabbed and moderately injured an Israeli policeman in East al-Quds.

Tensions have dramatically escalated since the Israeli regime’s imposition of restrictions in August on the entry of Palestinian worshipers to the al-Aqsa Mosque compound in East al-Quds.

Palestinians say Tel Aviv seeks to change the status quo of al-Aqsa. They are also angry with Israeli extremists who, escorted by army forces, have stepped up their raids on the sensitive site, which is Islam’s third holiest site after Masjid al-Haram in Mecca and Masjid al-Nabawi in Medina.

More than 100 Palestinians and nearly 20 Israelis have been killed in the recent wave of clashes between Palestinians and Israelis since the start of October.

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