Three Israelis killed in gun attack by Palestinian assailant

Peter Beaumont in Jerusalem
Israeli security personnel and emergency services gather at the site of an attack at the entrance to the West Bank settlement of Har Adar. Photograph: Menahem Kahana/AFP/Getty Images

Three Israelis have been killed in a gun attack by a Palestinian assailant at a settlement outside Jerusalem.

Police said the attacker was also shot dead after approaching the settlements’s gate posing as a labourer.

The assailant arrived at a rear entrance to the Har Adar settlement at about 7am as security guards were opening a gate to admit Palestinian labourers with permits.

When security guards became suspicious, the individual pulled out a gun hidden under his shirt and opened fire, fatally wounding three Israelis, before being shot himself.

Police provisionally identified the gunman as a 37-year-old resident of Beit Surik who held a work permit.

The three dead Israelis all sustained gunshot wounds to the upper body. The injured Israeli was transferred to hospital in Jerusalem in a serious condition.

The incident, at a settlement northwest of Jerusalem that lies near several Palestinian villages, comes nearly two years after a wave of unrest broke out.

The violence had subsided in recent months.

Since October 2015, the unrest has killed at least 295 Palestinians or Arab Israelis, 50 Israelis, two Americans, two Jordanians, an Eritrean, a Sudanese and a Briton, according to an AFP toll.

Israeli authorities say that most of the Palestinians killed were carrying out knife, gun or car-ramming attacks.

Others were shot dead in protests and clashes, while some were killed in Israeli air strikes on the Gaza Strip.