Gunfire near illegal Shavei Shomron settlement leaves one Israeli dead and two others wounded, medics say.

Rights groups say violent attacks by illegal Israeli settlers on Palestinians have increased, with little consequences for the perpetrators.
Rights groups say violent attacks by illegal Israeli settlers on Palestinians have increased, with little consequences for the perpetrators. (AFP Archive)

An Israeli man was killed and two wounded when their car came under gunfire near an illegal settlement in the Israel-occupied West Bank, medics said.

The Magen David Adom rescue service said medics unsuccessfully worked to revive a passenger in the car's back seat who was unconscious after getting shot on Thursday.

"Paramedics had to pronounce his death on the way to the hospital," Magen David Adom said in a statement, adding that two other men who were riding in the car suffered "mild" injuries from glass shards and were taken to hospital.

Medics said the shooting occurred near the Shavei Shomron settlement, in the northern West Bank near the city of Nablus.

The Israeli army said troops were searching the area for suspects.

The official Palestinian news agency Wafa said Israeli soldiers blocked entrances to Nablus following the attack, with hundreds of Palestinian drivers stuck on the roads.

Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett denounced the "horrific" attack, in a statement released by his office.

Israeli Defence Minister Benny Gantz extended his condolences "to the family of the terror victim killed in Judea and Samaria", using the Biblical terms for the occupied West Bank.

A chain of incidents

The shooting follows a string of attacks in occupied Jerusalem and the West Bank.

Last week, Israeli police arrested a 14-year-old Palestinian girl on suspicion of stabbing her neighbour, an Israeli Jewish resident of a settlement in an occupied neighbourhood of East Jerusalem.

Thursday's shooting also comes as Israel's ideologically divided coalition government faces internal tension due to the question of violence inflicted by illegal settlers on Palestinians.

Rights groups say violent attacks by illegal settlers on Palestinians have increased, with little consequences for the perpetrators.

On Monday Minister of Public Security Omer Bar-Lev said he had discussed "settler violence and how to reduce tensions in the area and strengthen the Palestinian Authority" in a meeting with the US State Department's Under Secretary for Political Affairs Victoria Nuland.

Israel's illegal occupation 

Israel seized the West Bank and East Jerusalem from Jordan in the 1967 Six-Day War. 

Since then, nearly 700,000 Israelis have entered into settlements that most of the international community regard as illegal.

Palestinians eye the territories as part of their future state.

Israeli hardliners, including Bennett, oppose Palestinian statehood. 

Source: AFP