Six Israeli soldiers and one civilian injured in West Bank shooting

Israel says two suspects arrested

Israeli troops search the area near Atof village after the attack. EPA
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Six Israeli soldiers and one civilian were injured after gunmen fired on a bus they were travelling in on Sunday, Israeli authorities said.

The incident occurred in the Jordan Valley in the occupied West Bank, near the village of Atof, south of Nablus.

Two suspects were arrested soon afterwards, 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.

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 gunshot 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, the 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 predawn 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 1967 when it seized the territories from Jordan.

Updated: September 04, 2022, 3:59 PM