Palestinians carried out two stabbing attacks in Jerusalem on Saturday before being shot dead by police, while another two Palestinians were killed during a violent demonstration near the Gaza border fence, as a weeklong bout of violence showed no signs of slowing.
Jerusalem has seen a wave of stabbing attacks linked to tensions over a sensitive holy site in the Old City that is sacred to Jews and Muslims. In recent days the attacks by Palestinian assailants have spread to the rest of Israel, while violent protests have erupted in the West Bank and along the Gaza border, where seven Palestinians were killed on Friday. The violence has unnerved a jittery Israel, and prompted the U.S. on Saturday to issue a fresh call for restraint by all sides.
In the first stabbing on Saturday, a 16-year-old Arab attacked two Israelis who were walking from the Old City toward the city center, said police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld. Police opened fire, killing the attacker. The two victims were lightly wounded, Rosenfeld said.
Later, just outside the Old City, another Palestinian stabbed two police officers, one in the neck. Rosenfeld said other police forces opened fire and killed the attacker, but also wounded one of their own. Three officers were taken to a hospital, one in serious condition.
On the Gaza frontier, meanwhile, protests resumed Saturday afternoon, with dozens of Palestinians throwing stones and rolling burning tires toward Israeli troops along the border fence. Gaza health officials said Israeli forces shot dead a 13-year-old and an 11-year-old. The Israeli military said it fired toward protesters who approached the border.