An Israeli woman was stabbed to death by a Palestinian who was among three assailants to be shot dead in separate incidents Sunday, Israeli security forces said. The latest flare-up of violence comes ahead of a visit to the region by U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry.
The Israeli woman was seriously wounded when a Palestinian attacked her with a knife in the West Bank on Sunday afternoon before being shot and killed by soldiers nearby, the military said. A spokeswoman at Shaare Zedek Medical Center in Jerusalem said the 21-year-old Israeli woman arrived in serious condition and later died of her wounds.
The attack occurred at the Gush Etzion junction near Jerusalem.
In an earlier incident, the military said a Palestinian woman pulled out a knife at the entrance to a military base and began approaching civilians. A local West Bank settler leader, Gershon Mesika, said he veered his vehicle off the road and struck the woman. A soldier then fired at her and killed her. The army did not say how close the woman had been to carrying out an attack or release a video of the incident.
Elsewhere in the West Bank, a Palestinian driving a taxi cab tried to run over Israelis east of Jerusalem, police said. After crashing his car, he emerged with a knife and tried to stab people, but was shot dead by a bystander before he could harm anyone.
Israeli politicians have encouraged licensed gun owners to carry their weapons during the latest wave of unrest.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu commended citizens for being on "maximum alert."
"I must say that we are showing such awareness, with considerable resourcefulness and courage, and this is deserving of all praise. We are still fighting and will continue to do so," he said at his weekly Cabinet meeting.
Sunday's attacks came two days before Kerry is scheduled to arrive in an attempt to calm tensions amid a two-month wave of violence that shows no signs of slowing. It will mark his first visit to the area to meet Israeli and Palestinian leaders in more than a year.
On Saturday night, a Palestinian stabbed four people in the southern Israeli town of Kiryat Gat. Following an hourslong manhunt, police found the 18-year-old hiding in the yard of a nearby home.
Since that start of October, 91 Palestinians and 15 Israelis have been killed in violence that was spurred by tensions surrounding a sensitive Jerusalem holy site and has since spread across Israel, the West Bank and the Gaza border.
Israel says the current spate of violence is due to a Palestinian campaign of lies and incitement surrounding the holy site, which is revered by Muslims and Jews. The Palestinians say the violence is rooted in frustration over nearly a half-century of occupation and they accuse Israel of using excessive force to suppress the unrest.