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Thursday, January 26, 2023

Palestinians say Israeli troops kill 9 in West Financial institution raid


JENIN REFUGEE CAMP, West Financial institution — Israeli forces killed not less than 9 Palestinians, together with a 60-year-old girl, and wounded a number of others throughout a raid in a flashpoint space of the occupied West Financial institution on Thursday, Palestinian well being officers stated, within the deadliest day in years within the territory.

The violence occurred throughout what Palestinian well being officers described as a fierce, daytime operation within the Jenin refugee camp, a militant stronghold of the West Financial institution that has been a spotlight of practically a yr of Israeli arrest raids. The battle spiked this month, with 29 Palestinians killed for the reason that begin of the yr. It was not instantly clear what number of of these killed Thursday have been affiliated with armed teams.

The preventing comes weeks into Israel’s new authorities, its most right-wing ever, which has pledged to take a tough line in opposition to the Palestinians and ramp up settlement building on lands the Palestinian search for his or her hoped-for state. It additionally comes days earlier than U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken is about to reach within the area and push for steps that may enhance every day life for the Palestinians.

The Israeli army stated it was conducting the uncommon daytime operation due to intelligence it had obtained {that a} militant grouping linked to the Palestinian Islamic Jihad, which has a significant foothold within the camp, was set to hold out imminent assaults in opposition to Israelis. A gun battle erupted, throughout which the army stated it focused the militants. At the very least one of many lifeless was recognized by Palestinians as a militant.

Photos revealed by Palestinian media confirmed the charred exterior partitions of a two-story constructing and cinderblocks and different particles scattered on a avenue. The army stated it entered the constructing the place the suspects have been positioned to detonate explosives it stated have been being utilized by the suspects.

Palestinian Well being Minister Could Al-Kaila stated paramedics have been struggling to succeed in the wounded amid the preventing. She additionally accused the army of firing tear gasoline on the pediatric ward of a hospital, inflicting youngsters to choke. Video from the hospital confirmed girls carrying youngsters out of hospital rooms and into the hall. The army stated tear gasoline had seemingly wafted into the hospital from the clashes close by.

Jenin hospital recognized the lady killed as Magda Obaid and the Israeli army stated it was wanting into reviews of her demise. The Palestinian Well being Ministry earlier recognized one other one of many lifeless as Saeb Azriqi, 24, who was delivered to a hospital in crucial situation after being shot, and died from his wounds. And the Al-Aqsa Martyrs’ Brigade — an armed militia affiliated with Fatah, the secular political social gathering that controls the Palestinian Authority, claimed one of many lifeless, Izz al-Din Salahat, as a fighter. The ministry stated not less than 20 folks have been wounded.

Internationally-backed Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas declared three days of mourning and ordered flags at half-staff. Nabil Abu Rudeineh, a spokesman for the Palestinian Authority, condemned the violence, calling on the worldwide neighborhood to talk out in opposition to it.

Akram Rajoub, the governor of Jenin, informed The Related Press the army prevented medical groups from evacuating the wounded and fired tear gasoline that seeped into the federal government hospital, affecting infants and interrupting surgical procedures. The army stated forces closed roads to facilitate their operation, which can have difficult the efforts of rescue groups to succeed in the wounded.

“We ask that the worldwide neighborhood assist the Palestinians in opposition to this extremist right-wing authorities and shield our residents,” he stated.

The deaths drew condemnation from neighboring Jordan in addition to from the militant Islamic Hamas group that guidelines the Gaza Strip.

The Islamic Jihad department within the coastal enclave has repeatedly fought in opposition to Israel, most lately in a fierce three-day conflict final summer time that killed dozens of Palestinians and disrupted the lives of a whole bunch of 1000’s of Israelis. Tensions surrounding violence within the West Financial institution have previously spilled over to Gaza.

“The response of the resistance to what occurred as we speak in Jenin camp is not going to be delayed,” warned high Hamas official Saleh Arouri.

Tensions between Israelis and Palestinians have soared since Israel launched the raids final spring, following a spate of Palestinian assaults that killed 19 folks, whereas one other spherical of assaults later within the yr introduced the demise toll to 30.

Practically 150 Palestinians have been killed final yr, making 2022 the deadliest since 2004, in accordance with the Israeli rights group B’Tselem.

Israel says many of the lifeless have been militants. However youths protesting the incursions and others not concerned within the confrontations have additionally been killed. Thus far this yr, and never together with Thursday, one-third of the Palestinians killed by Israeli troops or civilians had ties to armed teams.

Israel says the raids are supposed to dismantle militant networks and thwart future assaults. The Palestinians say they additional entrench Israel’s 55-year, open-ended occupation.

Israel captured the West Financial institution, east Jerusalem and the Gaza Strip within the 1967 Mideast conflict, territories the Palestinians declare for his or her hoped-for state.

Israel’s new far-right authorities, headed by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and propped up by ultranationalist and ultra-Orthodox events, has pledged to place West Financial institution settlement growth on the high of its precedence checklist and has already introduced a sequence of punitive steps in opposition to the Palestinians for pushing the U.N.’s highest judicial physique to provide its opinion on the Israeli occupation.

Goldenberg reported from Tel Aviv, Israel. Related Press writers Areej Hazboun and Isabel DeBre in Jerusalem contributed to this report.

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