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Israel 'on offensive' after Tel Aviv attacks, launches W.Bank raids

By AFP - Apr 10,2022 - Last updated at Apr 10,2022

Israeli vehicles are positioned at the entrance of the Nur Shams Palestinian refugee camp near the northern West Bank town of Tulkarem on Sunday (AFP photo)

JENIN, Palestinian Territories — Israeli forces carried out fresh raids on Sunday in the flashpoint West Bank district of Jenin, a bastion of Palestinian groups and the home of gunmen who launched two recent deadly attacks.

As Israel was laying to rest three recent shooting victims, gun battles rocked the Jenin area for a second day, with 10 people wounded in clashes across the West Bank on Sunday, according to the Palestinian health ministry.

"The State of Israel has gone on the offensive," Prime Minister Naftali Bennett said after a Cabinet meeting, vowing to "settle accounts with everyone who was linked, either directly or indirectly, to the attacks".

Israeli forces on Sunday detained 20 Palestinians, a military source said.

The operation came after a gunman from Jenin went on a shooting rampage in a Tel Aviv nightlife area Thursday, killing three Israelis and wounding more than a dozen others — the latest in a spate of bloody attacks in Israel.

Hamas and Islamic Jihad welcomed the Tel Aviv attack, which was condemned by Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas.


Palestinian woman killed 

Elsewhere in the West Bank, near the southern city of Bethlehem, Israeli forces on Sunday shot dead a Palestinian woman who had approached them and failed to stop after they had fired warning shots, the forces said.

The woman — a widowed mother of six in her 40s named by the Palestinian news agency Wafa as Ghada Ibrahim Sabatien — died after suffering massive blood loss from a torn artery, the Palestinian health ministry said.

The Islamic Jihad movement condemned her killing in Bethlehem as an “execution in broad daylight”.

But the centre of the heightened tensions was the Jenin area where, the Israeli forces told AFP, Palestinians shot from passing vehicles at Israeli forces, who responded with live fire.

A total of 20 “wanted individuals” suspected of involvement in attacks were apprehended, the source said, while the Palestinian Prisoners Club announced 24 arrests across the West Bank, which Israel has occupied since the 1967 war.

The Israeli source said forces had located stolen Israeli army ammunition and uniforms in the residence of one of the suspects, and an explosive device in another home.

No Israeli forces were reported injured, while the Palestinian health ministry said at least 10 Palestinians were wounded in clashes in Jenin, as well as in Jericho and Tulkarem.


‘No limits’ 


Tensions have surged during Ramadan, after violence flared during the Muslim holy month last year leading to 11 days of devastating conflict between Israel and Palestinian fighters in the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip.

In recent weeks, Israel has been stunned by a string of attacks, some carried out by assailants linked to or inspired by the Daesh group.

A total of 14 people have been killed in four attacks in Israel since March 22, including another shooting spree on March 29 in Bnei Brak, an Orthodox Jewish city near Tel Aviv, also carried out by a Palestinian attacker from Jenin.

Over the same period, at least 11 Palestinians have been killed, including assailants, according to a count by AFP.


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