Suicide bomber kills 4 in West Bank
Israeli airstrikes target suspected Gaza-area rocket-launch sites
JERUSALEM (CNN) -- A Palestinian suicide bomber blew himself up near a Jewish settlement in the West Bank late Thursday, killing himself and at least four other people, Israeli medical sources and police said.
At least two of the victims of the blast at Kedumim Junction were believed to be related, though their identities had not been confirmed.
Three of the victims were believed to have been in a car when the blast occurred about 9 p.m. (1 p.m. ET), while the fourth was found nearby.
It was not clear whether the bomber was inside or outside the vehicle.
Eli Bin, the head of Israel's Red Star of David medical organization, told CNN that authorities were investigating the possibility that the victims had given the suicide bomber a ride.
In Gaza, meanwhile, Israeli forces conducted two air strikes early Friday, the Israel Defense Forces said.
The IDF said the strikes targeted two areas believed to be used to launch rocket attacks into Israel -- a bridge in central Gaza and an open area east of Gaza City.
Palestinian security sources confirmed the strikes, saying the central Gaza bridge had been hit, along with a training field near Gaza City.
The strikes were conducted about 2:40 a.m. (6:40 p.m. Thursday ET), the IDF said.
The unrest came hours after Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas called acting Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert to congratulate him on his party's success in the Israeli elections, the prime minister's office said.
Abbas, calling while on a trip to South Africa, expressed hope that Olmert would be able to quickly form a coalition to govern.
A Hamas-led Palestinian government was sworn in Wednesday, and both the United States and Canada reiterated stands that they would have no contacts with such a government. (Full story)
The United States, Israel and the European Union regard Hamas as a terrorist group. The Islamic militant group calls for the destruction of Israel.
Olmert's Kadima party won 29 of the Knesset's 120 seats in Tuesday's parliamentary election, with Labor taking 20 seats.
Shas, a Sephardi Ultra Orthodox party, took 12 seats, as did Likud. Yisrael Beitenu, the Russian immigrant party, won 11. Those results were reported as final on Thursday by the Knesset.
Olmert has been Israel's interim leader since Ariel Sharon suffered a stroke in January that left him in a coma.
Olmert has vowed to define Israel's permanent borders within four years -- with or without talks with the Palestinians -- by evacuating many of the smaller Jewish settlements in the West Bank and annexing the larger ones.
The former mayor of Jerusalem said the Palestinian Authority must renounce terrorism and accept Israel's right to exist.
CNN's Ari Bell contributed to this report.
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