Israeli Intelligence Minister Israel Katz threatened to launch new military operations against Palestinians on Sunday after four people were killed during the span of a few hours in two weekend attacks in Jerusalem.
A Palestinian man fatally stabbed two Israelis with a knife in the Old City on Saturday night. Only hours later, another man stabbed a 15-year-old, who was then taken to the hospital. Both Palestinian attackers were fatally shot by police.
“We will sharpen our measures against the Palestinians,” Katz told Israel’s army broadcaster on Sunday.
Israel has banned West Bank Palestinians from entering Jerusalem’s Old City for the next two days.
There have been increasing clashes between Israelis and Palestinians amid a rift over the use of the Temple Mount/Noble Sanctuary, which lies in the Old City. The site is contested and is sacred to Muslims, Jews and Christians alike.
The US State Department condemned the violence on Saturday, with spokesman John Kirby calling “on all sides to take affirmative steps to restore calm and avoid escalating the situation.”
According to Palestinian media, a series of arrests by Israeli forces in the city of Jenin in the northern West Bank left more than 30 Palestinians injured. Two terror suspects were arrested in the operation.
An Israeli couple was killed Thursday in front of their four children in a West Bank attack allegedly carried out by a Palestinian.
The Israeli military said one gunman opened fire on an Israeli vehicle near Itamar, a settlement in the northern West Bank. The shooting left the two adults dead.
Their four children suffered injuries, the Israel Defense Forces said.