Explosion hits Israeli high school


JERUSALEM, AP

A car bomb exploded outside a high school in the northern coastal city of Netanya on Wednesday, lightly injuring six people, hours after a U.S.-mediated meeting of Israeli and Palestinian security chiefs ended without result.

Police spokeswoman Sivan Kedmi said the six were treated for shock. At least four of them were teenagers, hospital officials told Israel radio.

The blast went off at a bus stop outside the entrance to the Ort high school in the industrial zone of Netanya, about 35 kilometers (20 miles) north of Tel Aviv.

The car exploded at the time students would normally have been pouring out of the school. But classes ended 10 minutes early Wednesday because students were taking exams.

On May 18, a suicide bombing at a shopping mall in the resort city killed five Israelis and the assailant.

Netanya is about 6 miles (10 kilometers) from the West Bank and has been the scene of several bomb attacks by Palestinian militants in the past, although most have occurred in the busier shopping district downtown. There were no immediate claims of responsibility.

Earlier Wednesday, two Israeli vehicles opened fire on stone-throwing Palestinians at the Rafah refugee camp in southern Gaza, injuring four people, witnesses said. One of them, a 14-year-old boy, was critically injured with a shot to the chest, doctors said. The army said it was checking the report.

A day earlier, three Palestinians and three Israelis were killed in the West Bank and Gaza Strip, including Sarah Blaustein, a recent Jewish immigrant from the United States.

The United States condemned the attack Wednesday. “These ruthless acts of terror are unacceptable,” U.S. Ambassador to Israel Martin Indyk said in a statement. “Leaders need to speak out now against this violence and work determinedly to end it.”