Israeli forces raided a town in the West Bank on Thursday, touching off exchanges of gunfire in which two Palestinian security men and a third person were killed, the Palestinian Health Ministry said.
A poster circulated on local media identified the two dead as members of the Palestinian Authority's Military Intelligence force. The third victim, Jamil Al-Amouri, appears to be a wanted member of the Palestinian Islamic Jihad.
According to Palestinian reports, the incident began when undercover forces from the Yamam Border Police counterterrorism unit arrived in Jenin to arrest two wanted terror suspects, one of which is said to have been affiliated with the Islamic Jihad.
The two suspects appeared to have hid near a building belonging to Palestinian Military Intelligence, which is part of the PA's security apparatus.
Since the Israeli forces were undercover, the IDF and the Shin Bet did not coordinate their arrival with the PA's security in advance. As a result, once the Yamam troops began operating near the Military Intelligence building, the Palestinian forces stationed at the scene opened fire in their direction, leading to a heavy exchange.
Two Palestinian security officers were killed as a result. They were identified by the PA as Lieutenant Adham Aliwi, 23, and Captain Taysir Issa, 33.
"It appears that the unit they fired on was undercover," an Israeli security source said. "Our forces fired back, apparently thinking that the shooting from the Palestinian security men was part of the clash with the wanted terrorists."
Online video from the incident appears to show Palestinian officers taking cover behind a vehicle as gunshots are heard in the background. One shouts that they are exchanging fire with Israeli "undercover" forces.
Israel regularly conducts operations against Palestinian militants in the West Bank. But it rarely clashes with Palestinian Authority security forces, which conduct discreet coordination with Israel designed to maintain order in the territory despite long-stalled talks on Palestinian statehood.