Search continues for terrorist after Israeli policeman killed

The shootout took place between two gunmen and an undercover border police unit at the Otniel Junction in the southern Hebron Hills. The gunmen, believing the unit was a group of Israelis traveling in a car, opened fire, critically wounding Gavriel, who died shortly afterward in hospital.

The unit returned fire, seriously wounding one of the attackers, who was captured, and pursued the other who fled the area.

An Israel Defense Force officer leading a Golani unit that assisted in the pursuit was wounded in the arm and taken to Soroka Hospital in Beersheva.

Early reports of a Palestinian's death were incorrect.

Speaking with reporters at the scene Thursday of last week, Maj.-Gen. Yitzhak Eitan said the undercover unit has been operating in the area for months due to an escalation of shooting attacks on highways.

The unit has carried out complicated operations to prevent terror attacks, but its operations during last week's attack were not specifically directed at the two gunmen, Eitan said, adding that without a doubt their actions prevented an attack on Israeli citizens.

"Not every suspicious movement is perceived as one made by suspected terrorists. Therefore opening fire at suspicious movements is problematic."

While the majority of terror cells operating in the region have been uncovered, it is not clear whether the cell that attacked last week was the same as the one that carried out an attack two months ago. On Nov. 10, in exactly the same area, gunmen set up an ambush at the junction and opened fire at an IDF patrol, wounding two soldiers.