JENIN: Two Palestinian teenagers were shot dead on Saturday in an operation by Israeli forces in the occupied West Bank, prompting the Palestinian leadership to warn such military action may lead to "a point of no return" in the territory.
The Palestinian health ministry announced the killing of "two citizens by occupation (Israeli) bullets in Jenin", as Israeli troops carried out an arrest in the flashpoint northern city.
Eleven others were wounded in the latest violence to hit the West Bank, a day after two other Palestinian teenagers were killed by Israeli forces elsewhere in the territory.
Israel's military said troops entered Jenin on Saturday to detain a 25-year-old Palestinian it said was a member of the an armed group and suspected of shooting at troops in the area.
"During the activity, dozens of Palestinians hurled explosive devices and Molotov cocktails at IDF (Israeli army) soldiers and shots were fired at them. The soldiers responded with live fire towards the armed suspects," an army statement said.
Those killed were named by the Palestinian health ministry as Ahmad Daraghmeh, 16, and Mahmoud, 18. .
Israeli forces have launched frequent and often deadly raids in Jenin and other parts of the West Bank in recent months, often targeting Palestinian activists. Dozens of Palestinians have been killed, including fighters and civilians.
Palestinian-American journalist Shireen Abu Akleh was shot dead in May while covering an Israeli raid in Jenin.
Following the latest deaths in the city, the Palestinian presidency called on Washington to "exert serious pressure on Israel to stop its all-out war against our Palestinian people".
Israeli action "will push matters towards an explosion and a point of no return, which will have devastating consequences for all," said Nabil Abu Rudeineh, spokesman for President Mahmud Abbas, in a statement published by the official Palestinian news agency Wafa.
The agency also reported Israeli forces fired directly at journalists during the Jenin raid.
Two reporters were wounded on Wednesday while covering a military operation witnessed by a journalist near the West Bank city of Nablus, in which one Palestinian was killed.
Palestinian activist group Hamas said the Jenin raid demonstrated the Israeli military's weakness against "the resistance in the West Bank".
"So it resorts to mobilising military machines and helicopters to arrest one person," Hamas, which rules the Gaza Strip, said in a statement.
Saturday's violence in Jenin comes a day after two other Palestinian teenagers were shot dead by Israeli forces, according to the health ministry.
Fourteen-year-old Adel Dawoud was killed in Qalqilya, in the northern West Bank, while Mahdi Ladadweh, 17, was killed near the city of Ramallah.
The Israeli military said its soldiers fired at a suspect who threw Molotov cocktails at troops in Qalqilya and responded to a "violent riot" in the rural area northwest of Ramallah.
Ladadweh's mother Nawal said her son had gone out after lunch and a neighbour later came to tell her what had happened.
"I was at home... then she told me that my son was wounded," she said on Saturday, as the funeral was held.
Israel has occupied the West Bank since the 1967 Six-Day War and around 475,000 Israelis now live in settlements across the territory, which are considered illegal by most of the international community.
They live alongside some 2.8 million Palestinians, who in different areas of the West Bank are subject to Israeli military rule or limited Palestinian governance. - AFP