Israeli dies three weeks after Palestinian stabbing attack

Jerusalem (AFP) –


An Israeli stabbed near a religious site in the occupied West Bank earlier this month has died, a hospital spokesman said on Wednesday.

Genadi Kaufman, 41, was seriously injured near the Jewish holy site the Tomb of the Patriarchs in Hebron on December 7 by a Palestinian who stabbed him before being shot dead by Israeli border guards.

A spokesman for the Jerusalem hospital where he was being treated announced Kaufman's death "with great sorrow".

"Despite the struggle of the hospital doctors for three and a half weeks he didn't survive the very serious wounds he suffered," the spokesman said.

Since October 1, attacks by Palestinians, mostly with knives, and clashes between Palestinian youths and Israeli soldiers have killed 136 Palestinians, 20 Israelis, an American and an Eritrean, according to a AFP count.

The majority of the Palestinians were killed while carrying out attacks.

Tensions have been particularly high in Hebron, where several hundred Israeli settlers live under heavy military guard in the heart of the city among about 200,000 Palestinians.

The Tomb of the Patriarchs is known to Muslims as the Ibrahimi Mosque, making it a flashpoint for violent attacks.

Speaking before the country's weekly cabinet meeting, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu expressed his condolences to the family and said Israel's commitment to a Jewish presence in Hebron was unshakeable.

"Except for a few years in the previous century, we have been there for almost 4,000 years and we will stay there forever. You cannot defeat us," he said.