JERUSALEM — Israeli soldiers shot and wounded six Palestinians on the occupied West Bank today, hospital officials said, and in Jerusalem about 200 Arabs stoned riot police outside a shrine of Islam on Temple Mount.
The army confirmed that two Arabs were wounded, and said it is checking the other reports. At least 40 Arabs have been killed by Israeli gunfire since riots began Dec. 8 on the occupied West Bank and in the Gaza Strip, and more than 200 have been wounded.
Two Palestinians were wounded in Hebron when soldiers fired on dozens of Arab protesters who barricaded the main road with burning tires, then hurled rocks at soldiers and passing cars, the army said.
An official at Mukassad Hospital in Arab east Jerusalem said a 19-year-old Palestinian from Al Arub village near Hebron was shot in the shoulder, and an official of Al Ittihad Hospital in Nablus said five Arabs were hospitalized with gunshot wounds in the legs and feet.
A Jewish settler from Brooklyn, N.Y., whose skull was fractured by a stone thrown by Arab protesters, regained consciousness today. His brother-in-law, a lawyer from Queens, N.Y., suffered a broken breastbone in the incident Thursday outside Malik, an Arab village 15 miles north of Jerusalem.
Jews in the West Bank settlement of Ofra held a prayer vigil at dawn today for the 28-year-old settler, Meshulam Moskowitz. His wife, Pauline, said Moskowitz and his brother-in-law, Steven Wagner, were trapped in their car at a roadblock near Malik. She said that her husband fired shots in the air to disperse the mob but that the Arabs attacked when his ammunition ran out.
"They began bombarding them with big, big stones," Mrs. Moskowitz said. "My husband got a very serious blow to the skull. If you look at my husband you will see what one stone can do to somebody."
Skirmishes After Prayers
Clashes were reported after Muslim prayers today throughout the occupied territories, where 1.5 million Palestinians live.
Palestine Press Service said soldiers and protesters fought in the villages of Salem, Hawara and Toubas, all outside Nablus in the West Bank.
Two Arabs in Jerusalem, their faces wrapped in checkered head scarfs, emerged from noon prayers at Al Aqsa Mosque on Temple Mount, which Arabs call Harim el Sharif, waving a Palestinian flag and chanting. They were carried on the shoulders of dozens of other Palestinians.
A mosque prayer leader asked them to leave, calling out: "Go home! Do not provoke a desecration of this holy place!" The protesters threw stones at riot officers instead, but police kept their distance and no injuries were reported.