Riots broke out along the border fence in northern and central Gaza on Friday, with IDF soldiers driving back the participants using both non-lethal dispersal means and live fire against “instigators,” the army said.
Sources in the Gaza Strip said three Palestinians were wounded in the clashes.
The television station run by the Hamas terror group, which controls Gaza, said that two of the wounded were in serious condition, Israel Radio reported.
“Several violent riots took place in the northern and central Gaza Strip. In order to prevent the threat of infiltration, forces responded with riot-dispersal means,” the army said.
“In one of the riots, three instigators breached the buffer zone” — an area surrounding the border where Palestinians are not allowed to enter — “and in order to prevent their further advance, the forces shot towards them,” an IDF spokesperson said.
As of Friday evening, one of the riots was still taking place, while the other had been dispersed, according to the IDF.
Earlier Friday, a Palestinian teenager was shot by Israeli security forces as he attempted to carry out a stabbing attack outside the West Bank settlement of Kiryat Arba, the IDF said.
No Israelis were injured in the attack. The assailant, who, according to Palestinian media, was 14 years old, suffered gunshot wounds to the leg and chest. He received treatment at the scene, before being taken by military ambulance to Jerusalem’s Shaare Zedek Medical Center for further medical care, the army said.
The assault was the 10th such attack in under a week, with the vast majority occurring in Jerusalem and the Hebron area, where Palestinians live in close proximity to settlers and Israeli troops.
The renewed surge in attacks 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.
Officials fear the upcoming Jewish holidays and the recently ended Muslim holiday of Eid al-Adha could be behind the raised tensions.
The holiday and the month of September “are always more susceptible to spikes in violent Palestinian activities,” a military official, speaking anonymously, said last week.
“The motivation and inspiration to carry out attacks against Israelis remains strong,” the official said.
In the past year, Israel saw a wave of so-called “lone-wolf” Palestinian terror attacks, which has claimed the lives of 35 Israelis and four foreign nationals since October 2015. Over 200 Palestinians have also been killed in the past year, with the Israeli army and police saying that most of those killed were attackers or involved in clashes with security forces.