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Israel 'shuts down' hometown of suspected Tel Aviv shooter

Israeli forces raided the town of Yatta and marked the suspect's home for demolition [AFP]

Date of publication: 9 June, 2016

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Israel moved Thursday to exact collective punishment on the inhabitants of the hometown of suspected Palestinian shooter involved in Wednesday's deadly shooting in Tel Aviv
Israeli occupation forces raided the West Bank hometown of two Palestinian shooters suspected of carrying out the lethal shooting attack in Tel Aviv on Wednesday night, said Israeli press reports.

An undisclosed number of residents were arrested and the village, Yatta in the Hebron Hills, was closed off until further notice following a “security assessment,” the Israel army announced on Thursday morning.

Entrance to and exit from the village will only be allowed in “humanitarian cases,” the army said.

During the late night raid, the home of one of the suspected shooters was prepared for demolition, the army added.

Israel says home demolitions are used as a deterrent against future attacks, but critics say they amount to collective punishment and are ineffective.

Four people were killed and 16 more injured when two Palestinians armed with automatic weapons opened fire inside a restaurant in the Sarona Market shopping complex in central Tel Aviv. The two gunmen were caught shortly after the attack.

Also in response to the attack, Israel’s Defence Ministry froze 83,000 permits given to Palestinians to travel to Israel during the Muslim Ramadan holy month Thursday.

Permits for 500 people from the Gaza Strip to attend Friday prayers at the Al-Aqsa Mosque were also revoked.

The ministry also froze 204 regular work permits for members of the shooters’ extended families, according to the Coordinator for Government Activities in the Territories, the Defence Ministry unit that manages civilian affairs in the West Bank.

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