Israeli forces destroy family homes of 3 alleged Palestinian attackers killed in February
Israeli forces on Monday demolished the family homes of three Palestinians killed after they allegedly carried out an attack in East Jerusalem in February, Palestinian security sources and the Israeli Army said.
The three homes were destroyed in Qabatiya in the northern West Bank.
"Security forces demolished the residences of Ahmed Najeh Ismaeel Naser, Muhammad Ahmed Kmail, and Ahmed Najeh Abu al-Roub in the village of Qabatiya south of Jenin," an Israeli Army statement said.
During the demolitions Israeli soldiers and Palestinians exchanged fire, leaving two Palestinians injured, Palestinian security sources said.
On February 3, Israeli police said they shot dead three Palestinian men who allegedly carried out a shooting and stabbing attack at an entrance to Jerusalem's walled Old City, killing 19-year-old Hadar Cohen and seriously wounding another officer.
The United Nations, which monitors Israeli home demolitions, confirmed the latest demolitions but said the number of family members left homeless was not yet clear.
Israel regularly demolishes the family homes of alleged Palestinian attackers to punish their families as well as deter future attacks in East Jerusalem which is under Israeli occupation.
However, such demolitions are strongly condemned by human rights groups as they say the policy amounts to collective punishment, forcing relatives to suffer for the acts of others.
Moreover, some Israelis question its effectiveness as a deterrent while Palestinian residents say it only encourages retaliation.
East Jerusalem was occupied and subsequently annexed by Israel following the Six-Day War in 1967, a move considered illegal by the international community.