Several injured in explosions near Jerusalem bus stops


DEVELOPING STORY,

The separate explosions came after a 16-year-old Palestinian was killed in the occupied West Bank by Israeli forces, according to Palestinian officials.

Explosions near two bus stops in Jerusalem have left at least 12 people injured, according to hospitals receiving the wounded.

Israeli police said that the incidents on Wednesday are suspected of being a Palestinian attack.

The explosions came hours after a Palestinian 16-year-old was killed by Israeli forces in the occupied West Bank city of Nablus, according to Palestinian officials.

The first explosion in Jerusalem went off near a bus station along a highway leading out of the city that is usually packed with commuters.

Al Jazeera’s Alan Fisher reported that there was then a controlled explosion in a separate location, and that the explosions were the first Jerusalem had seen “in many years”.

Yosef Haim Gabay, a medic who was at the scene when the blast occurred, told Army Radio that “there is damage everywhere here” and that some of the wounded were bleeding heavily.

Two of the injured are reported to be in a critical condition.

While the cause was still being determined, the incident came as Israeli-Palestinian tensions are high, following months of Israeli raids in the occupied West Bank prompted by a spate of deadly attacks against Israelis that killed 19 people.

More than 130 Palestinians have been killed in Israeli-Palestinian fighting in the West Bank and east Jerusalem this year, making 2022 the deadliest year since 2006.

At least 25 people have also been killed on the Israeli side.

Itamar Ben-Gvir, a far-right lawmaker who has called for the death penalty for Palestinian attackers and who is set to become the minister in charge of police in the country’s new government, said the attack gave him impetus to take a tougher stance on Palestinian attackers.

“It’s time to take a hard line against terrorists, it’s time to make order,” he tweeted.

Hamas, the Palestinian group which rules the Gaza Strip and once carried out suicide bombings against Israelis, praised the perpetrators of the attacks, calling it a heroic operation, but stopped short of claiming responsibility.

“The occupation is reaping the price of its crimes and aggression against our people,”

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