A Palestinian assailant stabbed two ultra-Orthodox Jews and a police officer in Jerusalem's Old City before being shot dead by security forces, say Israeli authorities.

On Saturday (1 April) an attacker wounded two Jewish youths aged 18 and 20 on Haggai Street, in the Muslim Quarter, before fleeing the scene, said police spokesman Luba Samri.

Police forces reportedly gave chase but he then stabbed a border policeman in his early 20s before being shot and killed by security forces.

The victims received treatment at the scenes and were taken to hospital where they were said to have suffered light-to-moderate wounds.

Reuters reported that the assailant stabbed one of the two civilians in the upper body and fled into a nearby house where he was caught by border police officers and shot dead.

Police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld said in a series of Tweets: "Heighten security continues in old city, Jerusalem. Police patrol areas after afternoon knife attack by Palestinian terrorist.

"Update to stabbing attack old city, Jerusalem. 3 people Injured lightly, taken to hospitals. Terrorist shot by police responding at scene."

He said: "Stabbing attack in old city, Jerusalem. Police units respond to attack. Terrorist shot. Area closed off. Heightened security in old city."

Channel 2 news reported that the assailant was a 17-year-old from the West Bank city of Nablus while other Palestinian media named the teenager as Ahmed Ghazzal.

This was the second stabbing attack in the Old City this week which after border police shot and killed a woman who tried to stab officers at Damascus Gate with a pair of scissors on Wednesday (29 March).

The Palestinian Health Ministry later identified the female assailant as Siham Rateb Nimir, 49, from East Jerusalem, reported the Times of Israel.

Sporadic violence in Israel and the Palestinian Territories has left at least 242 Palestinians dead since October 2015.

Israel says that at least 162 of the dead were Palestinians who launched stabbing, shooting or ramming attacks using vehicles who were killed by Israeli security forces.

In contrast, two American tourists and 37 Israelis have died in the violence which began 18 months ago.

Stabbing attack jerusalem
Israeli border police and police secure an alley following a stabbing attack inside the old city of Jerusalem April 1, 2017 REUTERS/Ammar Awad