Israeli sources reported Sunday that one settler was shot and killed, and five others were injured, one seriously, after Palestinian gunmen opened fire at them at the entrance of the northern West Bank city of Nablus. The slain settler is the nephew of Israeli Culture Minister, Limor Livnat.Local sources reported that the attack took place after a group of settlers arrived on Sunday morning at the Joseph Tomb in Nablus without coordinating the visit with the army or the District Coordination office (DCO), and while leaving the area, gunmen opened fire at their three vehicles.
Israeli daily, Haaretz, reported that three settlers were injured in the attack, and that the slain settler, Ben-Joseph Livnat, is the nephew of Israeli Culture Minister, Limor Livnat. He died shortly after he was moved to a nearby Israeli army base.
According to Haaretz, the gunshots came from a Palestinian security officer who reportedly opened fire at the Israeli vehicles while leaving the Joseph Tomb following an unauthorized visit.
The Israeli army stated that Israeli pilgrims to the tomb are granted the opportunity to pray at the site once a month after receiving the needed permission and security arrangements.
Haaretz added that the two settlers, approximately 30 and 17 year old, suffered moderate-to-serious wounds, and were rushed to an Israeli settlement near Nablus, while a third settler suffered mild injuries.
Following the incident, Nablus governor, Jibril Al Masry, announced opening an investigation into the attack.
Israeli Ynet News reported that the Army and the Palestinian Authority are investigating the attack, and that the army stated that the shooting is not a “terror attack” as the visit was not coordinated.
The Ynet added that the shooting could have been prevented of the group of Israelis, who visited the tomb, have coordinated their visit in advance. It said that Israeli and Palestinian security officials will be holding a meeting later on Sunday to coordinate a joint investigation into the shooting.
In 2003, two Israelis were wounded at the Joseph tomb after Palestinian gunmen opened fire at them after they entered the area without coordination.
The Joseph Tomb is under the “control” of the Palestinian Authority since 2000, while the army allows organized visits to the tomb at night, under the protection of Israeli soldiers.