Middle East

Palestinian shot dead in attempted Jerusalem stabbing

Israeli police investigate at the scene of a stabbing in the West Bank settlement of Gush Etzion Sunday, Sept. 15, 2018. (AP Photo/Mahmoud Illean)

OCCUPIED JERUSALEM: A Palestinian was shot dead by police outside Jerusalem's Old City Tuesday after an alleged attempted stabbing attack, Israeli and Palestinian officials said.

Israeli police reported "an attempted stabbing attack" near Damascus Gate and that "a police unit at the spot neutralized the suspect".

The Palestinian health ministry said it had been informed of the death of a civilian by gunshots.

The attempted attack took place as the fasting holiday of Yom Kippur, the most solemn day in the Jewish calendar, was starting, with thousands of Jews attending prayers in the Old City.

AFP journalists at the site saw what a body covered with a sheet at the scene, with access from Damascus Gate blocked and Palestinians watching from nearby shops.

There was a heavy police presence.

Palestinian witnesses told AFP the alleged attacker was not trying to stab anyone, rather "defending himself" from a Jewish civilian.

A wave of Palestinian knife attacks against Israelis broke out in 2015, but they have since become sporadic.

On Sunday, a young Palestinian fatally stabbed an Israeli-American man near the entrance to a mall in the occupied West Bank before being shot and wounded.

 

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