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Eight dead in Mideast violence

6 Palestinians killed in Gaza; 2 Israelis killed near Hebron


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HEBRON, West Bank (CNN) -- Eight people died in continuing violence in the West Bank and Gaza Thursday, according to Israeli sources.

Two Israelis were killed Thursday in a shooting attack near an Israeli army post at Hebron, Israeli TV and medical sources said, and six Palestinians were killed in two separate shootings in Gaza, according to the Israel Defense Forces.

In Hebron, a female died at the scene and a male died on the way to a hospital, sources said.

Both the Israel Defense Forces and Palestinian security sources said they were checking the report.

In the separate incidents, Israeli troops shot and killed five Palestinians who were apparently trying to climb a security fence between Gaza and Israel near the Karni Crossing, Israeli military sources said Thursday.

Their bodies were found Thursday morning near the fence. There were no weapons on them, the IDF said.

The IDF said troops, who had been given a specific intelligence report that there would be an infiltration attempt, spotted the group of Palestinians Wednesday night and after several warnings opened fire.

Gaza is surrounded by a security fence, and, the sources said, the Palestinians were in a buffer area that Palestinians are not allowed to enter.

In another incident, the IDF said border police shot and killed a Palestinian who was trying to cut a fence to break into the Gaza settlement of Gush Katif.

Next to the body was a Kalashnikov rifle and several hand grenades, the IDF said.

A second Palestinian escaped into Khan Yunis, the IDF said.

In the Hebron incident, Israeli TV reported that two Palestinians opened fire near the Jewish settlement inside Hebron near the Tomb of Patriarchs.

The incident occurred as tensions have been mounting over the proposed demolition of 15 Palestinian homes along a corridor linking Israeli settlers to the tomb.

Nearly a month ago, 12 Israelis were killed along the corridor that connects the Israeli settlement of Kiryat Arba and the Tomb of Patriarchs.



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