Israeli Troops Kill Wanted Palestinian

December 16, 2008 - 7:11 AM
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Nablus, West Bank (AP) - Israeli troops killed a wanted Palestinian militant in the West Bank early Tuesday, and the Islamic Jihad group retaliated with rocket fire from the Gaza Strip.
 
The Israeli military said troops attempted to arrest Jihad Nawhda and opened fire when he tried to escape. He died on the way to the hospital. Nawhda was planning to carry out an imminent attack and had been wanted for a year, the military said.
 
Palestinian witnesses said Nawhda, 23, was leaving an Internet cafe near the town of Jenin when the Israeli troops arrived.
 
In response to the killing, Islamic Jihad fired three rockets into southern Israel. No one was wounded. Israel then ordered its border crossings with Gaza sealed.
 
Gaza border official Raed Fattouh said the crossings were due to open Tuesday to allow in humanitarian supplies but that Israel had notified him they would remain closed.
 
A shaky truce between Israel and Gaza militants has allowed a trickle of supplies through the border crossings since June. But Israel has largely kept the crossings closed since early November in response to Palestinian rocket fire.
 
The truce is set to expire Friday. Israel has said it wants to extend the arrangement, but Islamic Jihad threatened not to renew the cease-fire if Israel targeted its members in the West Bank.
 
"Our rockets will not stop and it will be like the rain over all the Zionist towns around the Gaza Strip," said Abu Hamza, an Islamic Jihad spokesman.
 
Israel often carries out overnight arrest raids in the West Bank targeting Palestinian militants. It is holding peace talks with the moderate Palestinian government in the West Bank led by President Mahmoud Abbas, but says Abbas' security forces are not yet capable of taking control.