Four Israelis were stabbed and wounded, one seriously, in the southern city of Kiryat Gat in what police described as a terrorist attack.

Spokesman Micky Rosenfeld called it a "confirmed terrorist attack", noting that security forces were searching for at least one attacker who had fled the scene, near the football stadium in the centre of town.

One of the four was in serious condition, emergency services reported.

The incident bore the characteristics of a spate of attacks by Palestinians, predominantly stabbings, since the beginning of October.

On 7 October, a Palestinian stabbed a soldier and grabbed his gun in the same city, which is near Hebron, before being shot by security forces.

Since then, the wave of violence has left 86 Palestinians dead - many of them alleged assailants - as well as 15 Israelis, an American and an Eritrean.