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Palestinian Authority/Gaza, September 18, 2016

Woman arrested with knife outside West Bank settlement

Original source

Times of Israel

A Palestinian woman was arrested on Sunday after being found carrying a knife near the settlement of Itamar in the northern West Bank.

The woman, seen in a video wearing traditional dress, took a knife out when being questioned by a Israeli security official, according to reports.

The video showed her sitting on the ground with her hands up. There were no injuries in the incident.

The six attacks on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday - four stabbings, a car ramming and a rock throwing - caught many Israelis by surprise, as the violence that marked 2015 and early 2016 appeared to have waned in recent months, and raised fears that regular attacks could return.

Earlier on Sunday, an Israeli officer was stabbed and moderately injured in the West Bank settlement of Efrat. The attacker, identified as Baha a-Din Muhammad Khalil, was shot immediately after stabbing the victim and was taken to a Jerusalem hospital for treatment, the army said.

The Israel Defense Forces deployed an additional infantry battalion to the West Bank city of Hebron on Saturday evening.

The decision to reinforce the flashpoint locale with the Kfir Brigade's Shimshon Battalion was made "in accordance with situation assessments following recent terror attacks," the IDF said in a statement.

"The motivation and inspiration to carry out attacks against Israelis remains strong. That's why the IDF is strengthening its operational and intelligence efforts to stabilize the situation on the ground and deter these acts of terror," a military official said, speaking anonymously. "[The Eid al-Adha holiday] and September are always more susceptible to spikes in violent Palestinian activities," the official said.

However, he noted, though the attacks over the weekend were "of course a change from recent weeks, we cannot currently point to any major change on the ground that indicates it will increase."

On Saturday morning, an IDF soldier was lightly wounded in a stabbing attack in the West Bank city of Hebron.

The assailant, identified as Hatem Abdel-Hafiz al-Shaloudi, was shot and killed by security forces near the Tel Rumeida neighborhood of the city, the army said.

A video from the scene showed Shaloudi approaching a soldier at a checkpoint near the West Bank city's Jewish neighborhood of Tel Rumeida and presenting him with a piece of paper, ostensibly his identification papers. The moment the soldier accepts the paper and glances down at it, Shaloudi is seen pulling out a knife and lunging at him.