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Israel increases security after wave of knife attacks hits Hebron and Jerusalem

Israel security forces are on high alert and are taking active steps to boost the country’s internal security after eight attacks against military personnel and civilians have taken place in the past three days across the country. Jewish security officials are especially careful as they fear of an increase in attacks in the West Bank and East Jerusalem ahead of the Jewish High Holy Days in October: Rosh Hashana, Yom Kippur and Sukkot.

“Security assessments are being made all the timeĀ  – especially around Old Jerusalem, bus stations and traffic hubs. We will make the arrangements as and when we need them,” said Israeli Police spokesman Mickey Rosenfeld in a conversation with Sky News reporters.

The latest attack came late on Monday in the southern city of Hebron. A man attempted to stab a soldier in the Abu Sanina neighbourhood, but the attack was deflected and the assailant, a Palestinian man, was taken into custody without being hurt. An earlier stabbing attempt, also in Hebron, ended with two attackers killed in a confrontation with the Israeli Defense Forces near the Tomb of the Patriarchs.

israelstabOn Monday, two Israeli Police officers were wounded in a similar attack in Jerusalem’s Old City. One of the policemen, a 38-year-old female police officer, was taken to Jerusalem’s Shaare Zedek Medical Center and her condition was deemed grave after she was stabbed in the neck, according to medical staff. Her colleague, a 45-year-old officer, was stabbed in the back. According to the police, the assailant walked behind the two officers and stabbed them, before being shot. He is also in serious condition.

Not connected with the attacks, but following the line of an increase in security, on Monday night the Israeli Defense Forces operated a series of search missions in the West Bank villages of Sa’ir and Beit Ummar, targeting homes of the relatives of recent assailants. In Bethlehem, the IDF discovered a cache of weapons and large sums of money belonging to Palestinian conspirators.

The wave of knife attacks, dubbed the “stabbing intifada” started last year in September. 38 Israelis and 200 Palestinians have been killed in the following months.

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