A Palestinian official says planned peace talks with the Israelis scheduled for today have been called off following a deadly clash in the West Bank, in which Israeli soldiers killed three Palestinians during clashes outside Jerusalem. The official says the Palestinians decided to postpone today's meeting to protest the killings. He says the Palestinians are also upset about an Israeli announcement yesterday pushing forward with new settlement construction in east Jerusalem. It was not immediately known when peace talks would resume.
The clashes occurred during an arrest raid in the West Bank, a Palestinian official and the Israeli military said, in the deadliest incident in the area in years. An official at a Ramallah hospital said the three died from gunshot wounds sustained in the nearby Qalandia refugee camp. More than a dozen others were wounded, he said. An Israeli border police spokesman said officers were on a raid to apprehend a suspect when hundreds of Palestinians poured into the streets and hurled firebombs, concrete blocks, and rocks at them. He said officers used riot control munitions, a term that usually refers to rubber bullets and tear gas, and that police are investigating. The Israeli military said soldiers rushed to the scene after a different force came under attack, and that soldiers opened fire after they felt their lives were in "imminent danger."