Israeli soldier killed in Palestinian West Bank

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Associated Press

Posted on September 22, 2013 at 3:34 PM

JERUSALEM (AP) — The Israeli military says a soldier was shot and killed in the biblical city of Hebron in the West Bank.

It said the soldier was critically injured by direct fire Sunday evening and later died in the hospital.

He was securing an area where over a thousand people were visiting for the Jewish holiday of Sukkoth, it said.

The killing increases mistrust between Israel and the Palestinians at a time of U.S. mediated peace talks that restarted this summer.

This weekend, a Palestinian killed an Israeli soldier with the intention of trading the body for his brother jailed for shooting attacks.

Tensions run high in Hebron where about 500 Israelis live amid 170,000 Palestinians. Much of the animosity is over a holy site, sacred to both Jews and Muslims.

THIS IS A BREAKING NEWS UPDATE. Check back soon for further information. AP's earlier story is below.

A Palestinian border official says Israel is allowing construction materials into the Gaza Strip for the first time in six years, allowing them to be used by private builders.

Israel barred the entry of construction materials into Gaza when Hamas overran the territory in 2007, fearing militants could use them to build weapons and fortifications. It has allowed them in for projects funded by international organizations like the United Nations since 2010.

Private contractors have had to rely on goods smuggled through tunnels from Egypt. But shortages were reported after Egypt cracked down on those tunnels.

Gaza border official Raed Fattouh said 60 trucks hauling building materials will cross into Gaza on Sunday.

Still, contractors say the amount being allowed in is a fraction of Gaza's needs.

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