Attack reported at Jewish settlement; four killed

Thursday, June 20, 2002

JERUSALEM (AP) -- A suspected Palestinian infiltrator entered a house Thursday night in the West Bank Jewish settlement of Itamar and took several hostages, rescue workers and settlers said. Israel TV said four people were killed.

Rescue worker Neri Ketoa said from the scene that soldiers exchanged fire with the infiltrator. He said two of the wounded were evacuated to hospitals in serious condition.

Another rescue worker said several wounded people were in the house with the infiltrator. One of the wounded was a soldier who stormed the house, Israel Radio said.

Israel TV reporter Benny Lis said all the casualties were from a single family, which has many children.

The Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine claimed responsibility for the attack, according to a broadcast from Lebanon by Al-Manar television.

The settlement, where some of the most militant Israeli settlers in the West Bank live, is not fenced in. Settlers insist that the whole West Bank belongs to the Jews.

On May 29, a Palestinian gunman attacked a high school at the settlement near Nablus, killing three Israeli teen-agers.

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