Palestinian gunmen opened fire on a bus carrying Israelis near the West Bank settlement of Mevo Dotan on Sunday night in an attempted terror attack, the military and local officials said.
According to the Samaria Regional Council, the bus was returning settlers from a Hanukkah candle-lighting event at the site of the former Sa-Nur settlement.
At least seven shots were fired at the vehicle, local officials said. Images from the scene showed several bullet holes in the body of the bus, and some of the windows were shattered.
The Rescuers Without Borders emergency service said nobody was hurt in the shooting.
A local wing of the Palestinian Islamic Jihad terror group claimed responsibility for the attack in a statement. It later published an unclear video purporting to show the moment of the attack. In the footage, gunshots could be heard, but the bus could not be seen.
In response to the attack, Samaria Regional Council chairman Yossi Dagan called for the cancellation of the so-called Disengagement Law, under which Sa-Nur and three other settlements in the northern West Bank were evacuated alongside the 2005 disengagement from Gaza.
“In an area where there is no settlement, there will be terrorism,” Dagan said in a statement. “It’s not without reason that most of the terror attacks in recent years have taken place between Nablus and Jenin, an area where the settlements were uprooted, another proof that the settlements need to be returned and the Disengagement Law abolished.”
The Israel Defense Forces confirmed the attack in a statement, and said the Hanukkah event had been coordinated with security forces.
In recent months, Palestinian gunmen have repeatedly targeted military posts, troops operating along the West Bank security barrier, Israeli settlements and civilians on the roads.
Earlier Sunday, Israeli security forces arrested a Palestinian man and his son, suspected of opening fire at an Israeli car in the northern West Bank over the weekend.
The attacks came during an Israeli anti-terror offensive mostly focused on the northern West Bank to deal with a series of Palestinian attacks that have left 31 people in Israel and the West Bank dead since the start of the year.
The operation has netted more than 2,500 arrests in near-nightly raids, but has also left over 165 Palestinians dead, many of them — but not all — while carrying out attacks or during clashes with security forces.