Stabbing foiled at West Bank checkpoint, assailant wounded

Suspected attacker, a Palestinian woman, shot in the leg after refusing to stop, no other injuries

Israeli security forces guard at the Qalandiya Checkpoint near Ramallah on July 26, 2016. (Flash90)
Israeli security forces guard at the Qalandiya Checkpoint near Ramallah on July 26, 2016. (Flash90)

Security forces shot and wounded a Palestinian woman on Friday at the Qalandiya checkpoint in the West Bank as she tried to carry out a stabbing attack, police said. There were no other injuries.

“She approached the security forces with a knife in her hand. She did not respond to the calls of the soldiers to stop,” police said, adding that the threat was “neutralized.”

Soldiers fired at her legs when she refused to stop.

She was “lightly” wounded and arrested, police said.

There have been a series of attempted stabbings at the Qalandiya checkpoint, a major crossing point between Jerusalem and the Qalandiya refugee camp north of the capital.

The Qalandiya crossing has two approach lanes, one for pedestrians and the other for vehicles. Israel Radio reported that she came through the vehicle lane.

In April, a Palestinian brother and sister were shot dead by civilian security guards when they approached through the vehicular lane and didn’t heed calls to halt. The guards later said they feared the siblings were planning a stabbing attack.

Police suspect that the guards were wrong to shoot the Palestinians — a woman and her teenage brother — at the crossing, although at the time police said the woman had thrown a knife at security forces and that her brother was carrying two blades.

Defense officials have pointed to a trend among some young Palestinian women who, often due to personal problems, have in recent months attempted to commit suicide by staging knife attacks against soldiers and police with the expectation that they will be shot.

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