A teenage Palestinian girl was killed by Israeli troops near Ramallah in the West Bank early Monday, after a vehicle she was in allegedly accelerated toward soldiers, the military said.
According to the Israel Defense Forces, during overnight arrest raids in the city of Beitunia, a suspicious vehicle approaching the troops was spotted, and the soldiers signaled for it to stop.
“But [the car] accelerated towards the forces. In response, the force fired at the vehicle,” the IDF said, adding that “hits were identified.”
The Palestinian Authority Health Ministry said 15-year-old Fulla Maslama was killed. It was unclear if she was driving the vehicle. Her 16th birthday would have been marked on Tuesday, according to the PA.
Earlier the ministry incorrectly reported that 19-year-old Sanaa at-Tal from the southern West Bank city of ad-Dhahiriya, was killed. The PA issued a correction several hours later.
A second person in the car was taken by troops to Jerusalem’s Shaare Zedek Medical center for treatment. His condition was not immediately clear.
Palestinian news outlets, citing an eyewitness, said the vehicle was moving slowly, disputing the army’s claim.
The military said it was probing the circumstances of the incident.
During the overnight raids across the West Bank, the IDF said nine Palestinians wanted for questioning over suspected terror activities, including one in Beitunia, were arrested.
There were no injuries to Israeli forces during the operations, and all of the suspects were taken by the Shin Bet security agency for further questioning.
Israeli security forces have stepped up their operations in the West Bank following a series of Palestinian attacks that killed 19 people in the spring of this year.
Since September, another three Israeli civilians have been killed in attacks.
Four soldiers have also been killed in the West Bank in attacks and during the arrest operations.
The military’s operation has made more than 2,000 arrests in near-nightly raids, and has left over 130 Palestinians dead, many of them — but not all — while carrying out attacks or during clashes with security forces.