JENIN,(Reuters) – Israeli soldiers shot and critically wounded a 13-year-old Palestinian stone-thrower during a raid in the West Bank on Thursday, Palestinian medics said.
The shooting was the latest in the worst surge of violence since a truce was agreed nine months ago.
Palestinian witnesses and an Israeli military source said troops shot at youngsters who threw stones at them during a raid to arrest militants in the city of Jenin. Soldiers also exchanged fire with Palestinian gunmen.
Medics said the teenager sustained a head wound and was taken to an Israeli hospital for treatment.
A Palestinian security source said troops left the area after detaining three policemen. The Israeli army said it was checking the report.
Israel has increased its raids into West Bank towns and villages after an Islamic Jihad suicide bomber killed five Israelis last month. The army arrested 17 Palestinian militants elsewhere in the West Bank earlier on Thursday.
Israeli troops have killed 16 Palestinians, most of them militants, in airstrikes and raids following rocket fire and the suicide bombing. Gunmen killed a soldier in the West Bank on Wednesday.
Israel demands that the Palestinian Authority disarm militants. Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas prefers to negotiate with gunmen, fearing forced disarmament could lead to civil war.