Witnesses: Palestinian Killed in Jenin

Islamic Jihad militant Amjad Abeidi, from Jenin, dispatched Hanadi Jaradat, who killed 21 people; six Palestinians killed by IDF.

A Palestinian youth was killed Saturday by Israel Defense Forces in raiding the West Bank city of Jenin. Three children were injured in the attack, one of them seriously, Israel Radio reported.

Witnsses said the confrontation came as troops forces imposed a curfew in Jenin and searched homes in the area.

An IDF spokesman confirmed an operation was under way in Jenin, and said that the 16-year-old Palestinian was climbing a tank and was shot dead by the troops.

Also in Jenin, IDF troops on Friday captured senior Islamic Jihad militant Amjad Abeidi, who planned the suicide bombing at a Haifa restaurant last month in which 21 people were killed.

Abeidi is responsible for dispatching a number of suicide bombers to carry out attacks in Israel, including Hanadi Jaradat, who blew herself up in Haifa's Maxim restaurant.

The soldiers located the complex in which Abeidi was hiding, and searched it. Several hours later they found a weapons stockpile hidden under one of the houses. After the soldiers threw a grenade into the stockpile, Abeidi handed himself over, lightly wounded. He was transferred to the Shin Bet security service for interrogation.

As the soldiers left Jenin with Abeidi, Palestinian militants opened fire at them. The soldiers returned fire, killing a member of the Al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades, witnesses said.

Earlier in the day, Muhammed al-Mashash, 23, was killed by IDF gunfire in the Balata refugee camp, in the West Bank city of Nablus. According to IDF sources, shots were fired at troops in the camp, and three explosive devices were hurled at them. The IDF source said that soldiers fired at an individual who hurled the explosive devices.

Also Friday, IDF soldiers killed a 10-year-old Palestinian boy and three militants in the Gaza Strip.

The deaths came as Israel opened a key checkpoint close to the West Bank city of Ramallah, following a meeting between Israeli and Palestinian security officials in the area.

The move was the first steps toward putting into motion a promised easing of restrictions on Palestinians in the West Bank.

The boy was killed by a shell fired by an IDF tank in the Gaza Strip near Kibbutz Nahal Oz. A witness and medics said the boy had been hunting for birds with a net and string, but an IDF source said soldiers opened fire at suspicious figures handling an electric cable in an area where explosives are often planted against troops. The IDF added that one Palestinian was hit while two others fled.

Earlier in the day, three other Palestinians were killed in clashes in the Gaza Strip. The IDF Southern Command said that three had been involved in terrorist activity.

In the central Gaza Strip, soldiers from the Givati Brigade backed up by tanks, laid in wait on the outskirts of the Al-Muazi refugee camp for a terrorist cell which has been setting explosive devices in the area and firing mortars at the settlement of Kfar Darom.

Military sources said that the troops opened fire on five armed Palestinians as they were trying to lay an explosive device on the road leading to the camp. Two of the Palestinians were killed in the incident, during which they set off an explosive device weighing some 100 kilos. No soldiers were injured.

In the southern Strip, IDF troops shot dead at least one Palestinian they said was laying explosive devices near the security fence east of the town of Khan Yunis.

Palestinians also said a man was shot dead by IDF troops during an exchange of fire early Friday, when soldiers entered a house in the Al-Musader neighborhood of Gaza City. The IDF said that it had no knowledge of the incident.