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Trump's Mideast peace plan sparks growing Israeli-Palestinian tension
From:Xinhua  |  2020-02-07 20:26

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RAMALLAH/GAZA, Feb. 7 (Xinhua) -- U.S. President Donald Trump's Middle East peace plan has sparked a growing tension between Israelis and Palestinians in the past few days.

Palestinian political factions on Friday called on the Palestinians to hold rallies and demonstrations all over the West Bank and the Gaza Strip to protest against the peace plan, better known as the Deal of the Century.

Meanwhile, the Israeli army has deployed more forces in the West Bank after four Palestinians were killed and 15 Israeli soldiers injured in a new wave of clashes in the region.

Two Palestinians were killed when an Israeli army force stormed the West Bank city of Jenin to demolish the home of a Hamas member being held in an Israeli jail.

One Palestinian gunman was killed by Israeli police forces in the old city of East Jerusalem after he opened fire at the force and lightly wounded a police officer.

Israeli security forces arrested on Thursday a Palestinian young man living in East Jerusalem, after he drove and ran over a group of Israeli soldiers on the road between Jerusalem and Bethlehem, injuring 14 of them.

Following the killing of a 17-year-old Palestinian teenager in the southern West Bank city of Hebron during protests against the U.S. plan, Hamas in Gaza called for escalation against Israel.

"We call for an escalation of confrontation against the assaults of the occupier (Israel) and its settlers on our land and holy sites in Jerusalem and the West Bank", said Hazem Qassem, Hamas spokesman in Gaza.

Meanwhile, an Israeli army spokesman said in a press statement that the Israeli army will continue its efforts to restore security in the area and foil all assaults against Israeli citizens.

The statement coincided with reports that security coordination between the Palestinian Authority and Israel has been reduced to the lowest level.

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas' office condemned in an official press statement the killing of Palestinians on Wednesday and Thursday in the West Bank cities of Jenin and Hebron.

"The Israeli escalation against our people in the West Bank is dangerous and this escalation is the outcome of the Deal of the Century," said Nabil Abu Rudeineh, spokesman of Palestinian president in the statement.

"Any deal that doesn't meet the rights of our people and doesn't aim at making just and comprehensive peace will certainly lead to an escalation of violence which we witness at this time," he noted.

It is worth noting that following the car-ramming attack on Thursday, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told reporters that all attacks including "ramming, stabbing, shooting and incitement are useless."

Mahmoud Aloul, deputy chairman of Abbas' Fatah party, told reporters that Netanyahu's remarks are a clear signal that "Israeli occupation of the Palestinian territories will be eternal."