Israeli Military Imposes Closure on West Bank City of Nablus, Day After Soldier Killed by Palestinian Gunman
The Israel Defense Forces imposed a closure on Nablus in the northern West Bank Wednesday, setting up roadblocks at several traffic junctions leading in and out of the city, including the one where an Israeli soldier was killed the previous day when a Palestinian opened fire from a passing vehicle. Staff Sgt. Ido Baruch, 21, who was shot near the Shavei Shomron settlement, was part of a unit securing a march to Palestinian town of Sebastia, held to celebrate the settlement by Jews of the West Bank and to protest a string of recent shootings in the area. The IDF, which used military bulldozers to move mounds of dirt on to the roads in order to make them impassable, left some routes in and out of Nablus open, and will conduct security checks on vehicles that enter and exit the city. The armed Palestinian group Lion’s Den, formed in response to recent Israeli arrest raids across the West Bank, claimed responsibility for the attack. During the event on Tuesday at the remains of an Ottoman-era train station in Sebastia, the site of the first attempt to build a Jewish settlement nearly 50 years ago, settler leader Yossi Dagan, the head of the Samaria Regional Council, pledged to “bring millions of Jews to Judea and Samaria, the biblical names of the areas of the West Bank.