Israel destroys homes of two suspected Palestinian attackers
Israel has destroyed the homes of two Palestinians accused of separate attacks that left five people dead, the Israeli army said on Tuesday, the latest in a series of punitive demolitions that have drawn criticism from rights groups.
The overnight demolitions west of Hebron targeted the homes of two men said to be behind the 19 November knife and car-ramming attacks in Tel Aviv and at a junction in the occupied West Bank.
Mohammed al-Harub is accused of opening fire at a junction near illegal Israeli settlements in the occupied West Bank then ramming his car into a group of pedestrians, killing three people.
The same day, Raid Masalmeh allegedly stabbed two Israelis to death at an office building and car park in Tel Aviv.
It was one of the deadliest days since the wave of violence that erupted in October.
Harub's home was in Dayr Samet while Masalmeh's was in Dura, both west of Hebron in the southern West Bank. The two men have been arrested.
Since October, 176 Palestinians have been killed by Israeli forces, while 27 Israelis, as well as an American and an Eritrean have been killed by Palestinians.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has moved to expedite demolitions of alleged attackers' homes as a punitive measure.
Human rights groups say the measure amounts to collective punishment, with the suspects' families forced to suffer for others' alleged acts.