Photo: AP

Jerusalem----March 8......Another barbaric terrorist attack hit Israel late last night killing five Israeli teens. The young Israelis were shot to death as they lay sleeping in a school dormonitory. Another 23 Israeli students were wounded when a Palestinian terrorist infiltrated the settlement of Atzmona in the Gaza Strip just before midnight.

According to police reports, the terrorist opened automatic rifle fire and threw fragmentation grenades where the youths were sleeping. After a bloody 20 minute shooting spre, the terrorist was shot dead by soldiers. The wounded were taken to Soroka Hospital in Beersheba, where four terror victims were listed in serious condition and six others sustained moderate wounds, Magen David Adom said.

Victims in critical and serious condition were taken by bulletproof ambulances to the Kissufim crossing, where medics stabilized their condition before they were flown by helicopter to Beersheba's Soroka Hospital.

The IDF searched the community to ensure that no additional terrorists were at large. During the ordeal, residents were asked to remain in their homes and turn off their lights, and members of the community's emergency response team were deployed.

The names of the five dead teenagers are:

Asher Marcus, of Jerusalem

Tal Kurtzvail, of Bnei Brak

Ariel Zana, of Jerusalem

Eran Pikar, of Jerusalem

Arik Robiak, of Beit El

An anonymous caller identified the gunman as Muhammad Farahat, a youth from Gaza, and said he was a member of the Hamas military wing, Izzadin Kassam. The caller said he carried out the attack to avenge Israel's killing of Palestinians in a spate of military raids into refugee camps.

Residents said the terrorist entered the community from the direction of Rafah, in the southwest sector of the Gaza Strip, and cut through two perimeter fences.

"I was at home and I heard an explosion, apparently from a grenade... and then I heard a long burst of gunshots," resident Yisha Zmiri told Army Radio. "All I can see are ambulances and army."

In other related terrorist attacks, a Palestinian suicide bomber walked into a Jewish settlement's hotel complex in the West Bank and blew himself up in the lobby, injuring four people.

Another suicide bombing was thwarted at a Jerusalem cafe when the restaurant owner, a waiter and a customer jumped the man, shoved him outside and grabbed his bag after they saw wires dangling from it.

In the northern Israeli city of Pardes Hanna, a resident spotted a suspicious object in a shopping center and called police. As a bomb disposal team approached, the bomb exploded, police said. No one was hurt.

"Israel has never declared war on the Palestinians. Israel fights back against terror organizations in the framework of its right of self-defense. He who started this war has the power to stop it, but continues to prefer a war of terrorism," Sharon's office said in a statement.