Nine Palestinians killed in Israeli raid in Jenin

Jenin & London — Nine Palestinians have been killed during an Israeli military raid in the occupied West Bank – the deadliest in years – Palestinian officials say.

A woman aged 61 was reported among the dead in the flashpoint town of Jenin.

The Israeli military said its troops went in to arrest Islamic Jihad militants planning “major attacks”.

The Palestinian presidency accused Israel of a “massacre” and later announced it had ended co-ordination with Israel on security matters.

A 10th Palestinian was meanwhile shot and killed during a confrontation with Israeli troops in the town of al-Ram, near Jerusalem, as residents protested against the Jenin raid, Palestinian officials said.

Tensions have recently risen in the West Bank, as the Israeli military continues what it describes as an anti-terrorism offensive that began last April.

 
 

The sounds of gunfire and explosions echoed across Jenin refugee camp on Thursday morning, as Israeli troops surrounded buildings and clashed with Palestinian militants.

The Palestinian health ministry identified three of those killed as Magda Obaid, 61, Saeb Izreiqi, 24, and Izzidin Salahat, 26. Twenty people were also wounded, four of them seriously, it said.

The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) said its troops entered Jenin to arrest an Islamic Jihad “terror squad”, who it accused of being “heavily involved in planning and executing multiple major terrorist attacks on Israeli civilians and soldiers”.

It said forces surrounded a building and that three armed suspects were “neutralised” after they opened fire, while a fourth suspect surrendered. The IDF said troops were shot at by other Palestinian gunmen and returned fire, hitting targets. It added it was looking into “claims regarding additional casualties”.

Islamic Jihad and Hamas said their militants had targeted the troops with gunfire and improvised explosive devices.

The house which the IDF said was being used as a hideout by the Islamic Jihad cell was still smouldering where furniture inside caught fire.

 

The outer walls on the ground floor were reduced to rubble, leaving the taps and sink of a bathroom exposed. The upper floor was meanwhile pocked with bullet holes, while the stairwell contained a pool of blood.

Aisha Abu al-Naj, 73, who lives next door, told the BBC that her house shook during the raid, forcing her and her children to take cover.

“We were afraid. I saw the army and then I couldn’t open or look through the window. It was a scary situation,” she said.

“There were some young Palestinians next to our building who then came and surrounded it. They shot at them. And then there was a lot of people who were killed.”

Magda Obaid’s daughter said her mother also lived near the targeted house, and that she was shot in the neck as she peered out of her window to see what was happening.

The official Palestinian news agency Wafa reported that seven youths were shot and wounded while attempting to prevent the Israeli forces from entering Jenin, and that the troops “completely destroyed” the Jenin Camp Club.

 

Taxi driver Mohammed Ammori said he had been talking to a friend when Israeli troops pulled up beside a building close to the club in cars and a lorry.

“We heard gunshots. We fled into the Jenin club and we stayed under siege there for three hours.”

He added: “After about an hour, military bulldozers destroyed cars on both sides of the road, then destroyed the club’s wall.”

Palestinian Health Minister Mai al-Kaila said Palestinian Red Crescent ambulances were initially unable to reach the wounded because Israeli troops restricted access to the scene.

The children’s ward of a local hospital was also hit by Israeli tear gas, she said. The IDF told AFP news agency that there was activity not far away and that it was possible some tear gas entered through an open window.

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas declared three days of national mourning in response to what his spokesman called a “massacre” happening “amidst international silence”.

“This is what encourages the occupation government to commit massacres against our people in full view of the world,” Nabil Abu Rudeineh said.

Jenin Deputy Governor Kamal Abu al-Rub told AFP that residents were living in a “real state of war” and that Israeli forces were “destroying everything and shooting at everything that moves”.

Top Hamas official Saleh al-Arouri said that “the response of the resistance will not be late in coming”.

Later, the Palestinian Authority declared that security co-ordination with Israeli authorities “no longer exists as of now”. A statement said the decision was taken by the leadership “in light of the repeated aggression against our people, and the undermining of signed agreements”.

United Nations Middle East envoy Tor Wennesland said he was “deeply alarmed and saddened” by the violence.

“Since the beginning of this year, we are continuing to witness high levels of violence and other negative trends that characterized 2022. It is crucial to reduce tensions immediately and prevent more loss of life,” he added.

At least 30 Palestinians have been killed by Israeli forces in the West Bank so far this year, including militants and civilians, as the military continues operations there.

Last year in the West Bank more than 150 Palestinians were killed, nearly all by Israeli forces. The dead included unarmed civilians, militant gunmen and armed attackers.

A series of attacks by Palestinians and Israeli Arabs targeting Israelis, as well as militant gunfire at troops during arrest raids, meanwhile killed more than 30 people including civilians, police and soldiers.

Map of Israel and the occupied West Bank, showing the location of Jenin
 

Virtual Discussion on Corporate BDS Organizing

I am writing to invite you to join Omar Barghouti and me for a virtual discussion on corporate BDS organizing this Thursday, January 26 at 11 am ET/10 am CT/6 pm Palestine. 

Adalah Justice Project has played a key role in campaigns to compel corporations like Ben & Jerry’s to withdraw their complicity from Israeli crimes against the Palestinian people. This webinar gives us an opportunity to reflect with Omar Barghouti, co-founder of the BDS movement, on what these campaigns have accomplished and what more we can do together to advance BDS wins.

This event is hosted by our friends at Al-Shabaka and will be moderated by Al-Shabaka’s Nadim Bawalsa. 

We hope you will be able to join us this Thursday, January 26.

You can register for the webinar here.

Warmly,

Sandra Tamari
Adalah Justice Project

 

I’d like to you to meet Mahmoud and Emily, a Palestinian and foreigner couple who are thinking about taking the next big step in their relationship together.

Watch “Love Under Occupation,” a 2-minute short film by Mondoweiss.

WATCH THE FILM

No relationships were harmed in the making of this video. But they will be soon.

While Mahmoud and Emily are a fictional couple, they represent real couples who will now be required to report their relationship to Israel, in an extremely invasive, oppressive process.

Under new Israeli discriminatory restrictions that went into effect in October, foreigners romantically involved with Palestinian people must declare their relationship to the occupying Israeli government as part of their permit or permit renewal application to visit or stay in the West Bank.

These Israeli restrictions on foreign entry into the West Bank threaten to separate Palestinian families, and isolate Palestinian society from the outside world.

The same laws do not apply to foreign nationals who are in a relationship with Jewish Israelis. Another clear example of anti-Palestinian discrimination under Israel’s apartheid system.

Learn how these Israeli apartheid regulations impact Palestinian people, their partners, and their families on our “Love Under Occupation” educational resources page.

WATCH THE FILM

You can share this film and mobilize your base to fight anti-Palestinian racism and oppression. Consider screening it in your local Palestine solidarity group, student group, faith community, or other activism/educational space, and share the film online with #LoveUnderOccupation on Instagram, Facebook, or Twitter.

Thank you for watching and for raising your voice.

 

In solidarity,
IMAN ABID

Organizing & Advocacy Director

Israeli Apartheid: A Breakdown

Israel applies an oppressive, separate, and unequal regime on Palestinians. There is only one word for this: Apartheid.

Omar Baddar, Institute for Middle East Understanding (IMEU), Oct 14, 2020

Omar Baddar is Director of Communications for the Institute for Middle East Understanding, and past Deputy Director of the Arab American Institute.