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Israeli soldier lightly injured in West Bank car ramming attack

Army and Magen David Adom medics arrive on the scene of a stabbing attack near the West Bank settlement of Halamish on December 4, 2015.
Magen David Adom
Palestinian attempts to stab police officer in Jerusalem, is shot dead

A 20-year-old Israeli soldier was lightly injured Saturday in a car ramming attack at the Hawara check point outside of Nablus in the northern West Bank.

A soldier was wounded and forces responded, firing at the perpetrator, an army statement said. 

The soldier was evacuated to Beilinson Hospital in Petach Tikvah, outside of Tel Aviv.

The attacker was shot and seriously injured. After being treated initially at the scene, the assailant, identified as 56-year-old Meir Zabi was transferred to a Palestinian hospital in Nablus for treatment and later died from his wounds. The Israeli Defense Forces are reportedly investigating the possibility that the incident was an accident rather than an attack.

Earlier in the day a man tried to stab an Israeli police officer near Jerusalem's Old City and was killed, a police spokeswoman said.

"Police officers spotted a man who aroused their suspicions and approached him to check," she said. "The terrorist pulled out a knife and tried to stab the policeman and was quickly killed by police gunfire."

The Palestinian health ministry in the West Bank indicated that the dead man was a Palestinian whose identity was not yet known.

A wave of violence since the start of October has claimed the lives of 132 people on the Palestinian side, and 24 on the Israeli side.

Many of the Palestinians killed have been attackers while others have been shot dead by Israeli security forces during clashes.

On Friday, Israeli border guards shot dead a Palestinian woman who tried to ram a car into them in the West Bank, shortly after a Palestinian was killed in clashes with Israeli forces near the border with the Gaza Strip.

A number of Palestinians have attempted attacks with kitchen knives in what some analysts have described as virtual suicide missions.

Pope Francis, the leader of the world's 1.2 billion Catholics, used his traditional Christmas Day address to urge Israelis and Palestinians to resume "direct dialogue", saying the conflict had "serious repercussions" on the Middle East.

US-backed peace talks between the Palestinians and Israel collapsed in April 2014 after nine months of fruitless meetings amid bitter recriminations and mutual blame.

Staff with agencies

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