TUBAS (AFP/APP): Gunmen wounded six Israeli soldiers and a civilian when they sprayed bullets at a bus driving on a highway in the occupied West Bank, the army said.
Two suspects were arrested soon after near the burnt-out remains of the vehicle they were thought to have used, and guns were found lying on the dirt road nearby.
The windscreen of the bus was peppered with dozens of bullet holes and a side window was smashed after the attack near Tubas in the Jordan Valley.
The Israeli military said one soldier was seriously wounded and five others and a civilian suffered lighter injuries. Matti Carmi, from the Magen David Adom emergency medical services, said “two gunshots victims” were treated outside the bus. The two were both conscious and were airlifted to Rambam hospital in the Israeli coastal city of Haifa.
Three others who were wounded by flying glass were taken by road to another hospital in northern Israel, MDA said. Defence Minister Benny Gantz said security forces “immediately went in pursuit and got their hands on suspects in the attack”. The army said security forces were “continuing the searches” after two armed suspects were detained. On a dirt road near the bus, Israeli security forces surrounded a torched pickup truck reportedly belonging to the attackers. The cause of the blaze was not immediately clear. Hamas, the militant Islamist group which rules the other Palestinian territory, the Gaza Strip, praised the shooting as a “heroic” operation.
Sunday’s attack follows a shooting spree last month targeting an Israeli bus in annexed east Jerusalem.
Eight people, including several US citizens, were wounded in that pre-dawn attack near the Old City of Jerusalem. Following an hours-long manhunt, police said a suspect had handed himself in.
Israel has controlled east Jerusalem and the West Bank since the 1967 Six-Day War when it seized the territories from Jordan.
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