At least 7 dead in Jerusalem synagogue attack

STORY: At least seven people were killed after a gunman opened fire at a Jerusalem synagogue on Friday evening -- the latest attack amid rapidly escalating tensions between Palestinian militant groups and Israeli security forces.

Police said the gunman arrived around 8:15 p.m. and opened fire, hitting a number of people before he was killed by police.

There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the attack, which took place as worshippers gathered on the eve of the Jewish Sabbath.

But it comes after Palestinian Islamic Jihad launched nighttime rockets from the Gaza strip into Israeli territory.

The rockets triggered air-raid alarms in Israeli communities near the border with the blockaded Palestinian coastal enclave.

Israel responded to the rocket fire with airstrikes into Gaza.

And a day earlier, Israeli security forces raided a West Bank refugee camp, where they traded gunfire with armed Palestinians. The operation left at least nine Palestinians dead -- including militants and at least two civilians.

The months of violence, which surged after a spate of lethal attacks in Israel last year, have drawn fears the already unpredictable conflict could spiral out of control, triggering a broader confrontation between Palestinians and Israel.

The U.S. on Friday condemned the terrorist attack in Jerusalem.

A State Department spokesperson said American officials were in touch with their Israeli counterparts and did not expect any changes to Secretary of State Antony Blinken's planned visit to Israel next week.