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Israeli Soldiers Kill 6 Palestinians in Gaza as West Bank Unrest Grows

Israeli Soldiers Kill 6 Palestinians in Gaza as West Bank Unrest Grows

By Jodi Rudoren for The New York Times

Israeli soldiers killed six youngPalestinians on Friday in the Gaza Strip, including a 15-year-old boy, as they opened fire to quell crowds that hurled rocks and rolled burning tires close to the fence separating Gazafrom Israel, Israeli military and Gaza health officials said.

The deadly clash came as the roiling violence and unrest of the past week continued across Israel and the occupied West Bank; there were four more stabbing attacks, including the first by a Jewish Israeli against Arabs, and unruly demonstrations that raged into the night.

The deteriorating landscape presented intense political challenges for both Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel and President Mahmoud Abbas of the Palestinian Authority. Neither is ready to make a dramatic diplomatic move that could ease the conflict, yet the spiraling situation tests their ability to maintain control of restive constituencies.

For Mr. Abbas, who has preached nonviolence for his entire tenure, the escalating unrest undermines his credibility with international supporters and benefits his more militant rivals, like the Hamas Islamists, who have egged on the attackers.

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