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Palestinian Wielding Knife Shot Dead, Israeli Police Say

by Reuters /  / Updated 
Image: Palestinian protester hurl stones at Israeli troops during clashes in the West Bank city of Hebron
A Palestinian protester hurl stones at Israeli troops during clashes in the West Bank city of Hebron Oct. 31, 2015. Israeli security forces shot and killed a Palestinian who ran at them with a knife in the West Bank on Saturday, police said.AMMAR AWAD / Reuters

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JERUSALEM — Israeli security forces shot and killed a Palestinian who ran at them with a knife in the occupied West Bank on Saturday, police said, as a month-long wave of violence showed no signs of abating.

An Israeli police spokeswoman said that at a checkpoint in the northern West Bank a Palestinian holding a knife ran toward a security officer who called on him to stop.

Image: Palestinian protester hurl stones at Israeli troops during clashes in the West Bank city of Hebron
A Palestinian protester hurl stones at Israeli troops during clashes in the West Bank city of Hebron Oct. 31, 2015. Israeli security forces shot and killed a Palestinian who ran at them with a knife in the West Bank on Saturday, police said.AMMAR AWAD / Reuters

"When he did not heed those calls the security man shot toward him in order to neutralize him and as a result the terrorist was killed," spokeswoman Luba Samri said. Palestinian medical officials said he was 18-years-old.

This month's surge in violence, the worst since the 2014 Gaza war, arose in part from religious and political tensions over the al-Aqsa mosque compound in Jerusalem's walled Old City that is sacred to both Muslims and Jews.

A growing number of visits by religious Jews to the al-Aqsa plaza — Islam's holiest site outside Saudi Arabia and revered in Judaism as the location of two destroyed biblical temples — have stirred Palestinian allegations that Israel is violating a "status quo" under which non-Muslim prayer there is banned.

Israel says such allegations are false and that their voicing by Palestinian officials and circulation in Arab social media has been inciting the violence.

RELATED: West Bank and Jerusalem Hit By Stabbing Attacks; Clashes Erupt in Hebron

Since the latest unrest began on Oct. 1, at least 65 Palestinians have been shot dead by Israelis. Of those, 38 were assailants armed mainly with knives, Israel said, while others were shot during violent anti-Israel protests. Many were teens.

Eleven Israelis have been killed in stabbings and shootings.

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