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Palestinian woman rams car into Israeli soldier, shot dead - army

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JERUSALEM (Reuters) - A Palestinian woman rammed her car into an Israeli soldier in the occupied West Bank on Friday and was then shot dead by troops at the scene, the Israeli military said.

A wave of Palestinian-Israeli heightened violence, now in its sixth month, has shown no sign of abating and has raised concern of further escalation.

Friday’s attack took place at a main junction near the Israeli settlement bloc, Gush Etzion.

“The soldier was wounded and evacuated for medical treatment in hospital. Forces on site responded to the imminent threat and shot the attacker, resulting in her death. A knife was found in the assailant’s vehicle,” the Israeli military said.

Since October, Palestinian stabbings, shootings and car rammings have killed 28 Israelis and a U.S. citizen. Israeli security forces have killed at least 173 Palestinians, 115 of whom Israel says were assailants, while most others were shot dead during violent protests.

Palestinian leaders say many Palestinian attackers have acted out of desperation in the absence of movement towards creation of an independent state. Israel says they are being incited to violence by their leaders and on social media.

U.S. Vice President Joe Biden, on a five-day Middle East trip that begins on Saturday, will meet separately next week with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas.

U.S.-brokered peace talks between Israel and the Palestinians broke down in April 2014.

Reporting by Maayan Lubell; Editing by Nick Macfie