Israel seals residence of Palestinian synagogue shooter as Netanyahu vows crackdown

JERUSALEM, Jan 29 (Reuters) – Israeli police sealed off the Jerusalem household residence of a Palestinian gunman two days after he killed seven individuals exterior a synagogue, as fears grew of additional escalation within the deadliest unrest for years in Jerusalem and the West Financial institution.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu introduced plans on Sunday to make it simpler for Israelis to hold weapons after the synagogue assault, the deadliest in opposition to Jews within the Jerusalem space since 2008. It got here a day after the deadliest Israeli army raid for years within the West Financial institution metropolis of Jenin.

Since then, a 13-year-old Palestinian boy opened hearth on a gaggle of Israeli passers-by in Jerusalem on Saturday, wounding two earlier than one of many civilians shot and wounded him. On Sunday, residents of a Palestinian village exterior Ramallah within the West Financial institution stated a gaggle from a close-by Israeli settlement had burned one home and smashed doorways and home windows of one other.

Netanyahu stated making it simpler for Israelis to get permits to hold weapons would scale back violence: “We’ve seen, repeatedly … that heroic, armed and educated civilians save lives.”

Israeli authorities welded shut the doorways and sealed the home windows of the house of the household of Friday’s synagogue shooter. Netanyahu’s authorities additionally modified a standing coverage to seal off the home of the household of the 13-year-old shooter in Saturday’s assault, although nobody had been killed.

Additional steps have been additionally introduced to strengthen settlements within the occupied West Financial institution, and to revoke residency rights from kinfolk of Palestinians who perform assaults.

“Whereas we is not going to hesitate to behave in opposition to terrorism, we want to regain calm and stability on the bottom,” stated Defence Minister Yoav Gallant after a safety evaluation within the West Financial institution.

U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken is due in Jerusalem and the West Financial institution this week for his first go to since Netanyahu returned to energy on the helm of a coalition that features Israel’s far proper. Blinken’s go to now appears set to be dominated by efforts to stop the violence spinning uncontrolled.

A Palestinian gunman died on Sunday of wounds from Thursday’s raid in Jenin, elevating the loss of life toll to 10 together with two civilians from that raid. At the least 34 Palestinian fighters and civilians have been killed to this point this month in West Financial institution clashes with Israeli safety forces.

Final 12 months was the deadliest in additional than a decade for West Financial institution Palestinian civilians and militants, with violence steadily escalating following a spate of deadly Palestinian assaults in Israel.


Friday’s synagogue capturing presents a problem to Netanyahu, who returned to energy in December on the head of essentially the most right-wing authorities in Israeli historical past, promising to make Israelis safer after Palestinian avenue assaults final 12 months.

Sworn in a month in the past, Netanyahu’s authorities has prioritised settlement-building on lands the Palestinians look for a state, although it has not but taken main steps on the bottom. Most world powers think about as unlawful Israel’s settlements within the West Financial institution and East Jerusalem, land it captured within the 1967 warfare.

Awad Abu Samra, whose brother’s home within the village of Turmus Ayya was broken on Sunday, stated Israeli settlers have been now attacking native farmers “nearly each week or so”.

“They assault something that belongs to the Palestinians.”

The Israeli army stated on Saturday it was sending extra troops into the West Financial institution. Nonetheless, there was no rapid signal Israel was making ready for a large-scale army response to the capturing.

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas has not remarked on Friday’s assault and on Saturday blamed Israel for the violence. The gunman had apparently acted alone and was shot useless by officers as he tried to flee the scene, police stated.

Further reporting by Nidal al-Mughrabi and Ali Sawafta; Writing by Maayan Lubell and James Mackenzie; Modifying by William Mallard and Peter Graff

Our Requirements: The Thomson Reuters Belief Rules.

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