More than 14 Palestinians killed as violence flares in West Bank

Israeli forces killed 14 Palestinians during a raid in the occupied West Bank on Saturday, while an ambulance driver was killed as he went to pick up wounded from a separate attack by violent Jewish settlers, Palestinian authorities said.

Israeli forces began an extended raid in the early hours of Friday in the Nur Shams area, near the flashpoint Palestinian city of Tulkarm and were still exchanging fire with armed fighters well into Saturday.

Israeli military vehicles massed and bursts of gunfire were heard, while at least three drones were seen hovering above Nur Shams, an area housing refugees and their descendants from the 1948 war that accompanied the creation of the state of Israel.

The Tulkarm Brigades, which groups forces from numerous Palestinian factions, said its fighters exchanged fire with Israeli forces on Saturday.

The West Bank, a kidney shaped area about 100 km (60 miles) long and 50 km wide that has been at the heart of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict since it was seized by Israel in the 1967 Middle East war.

The Gaza war has overshadowed continuing violence in the territory, including regular army raids on militant groups, rampages by Jewish settlers in Palestinian villages, and street attacks by Palestinians on Israelis.

Settler violence is a source of growing concern among Israel's Western allies.

In Rafah, a strike hit a house and killed a father, daughter and pregnant mother, Hamas and Palestinian media outlets said.


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