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Israel: Members of Palestinian Islamic Jihad killed in raid

April 2, 2022

Israel conducted a raid in the West Bank Saturday, killing three members of Palestinian Islamic Jihad. The raid comes as Israel has been gripped by a slew of terrorist attacks in the past month.

Relatives of a Palestinian man who, according to medics, was killed by Israeli forces during a raid, react to his death in Jenin.
Family mourns one of the victims of an Israeli raid in the West Bank.Image: Mohamad Torokman/REUTERS

Israeli forces killed three members of the radical group Islamic Jihad during a raid in the West Bank near the city of Jenin, police said Saturday.

The three were killed when they opened fire on Israeli troops who were seeking to arrest them, leading to a shoot-out. Four soldiers were wounded with one in serious condition.

In a statement, Israeli police said intelligence indicated "a terrorist cell on its way to an attack." As a result, authorities moved and "stopped the car in which they were traveling between Jenin and Tulkarem."

Islamic Jihad confirmed the death of three of its members.

"We mourn the death of our three hero fighters," the armed wing of the movement said, confirming that two of the three were from Jenin and one was from Tulkarem.

Israeli authorities on alert

The raid comes as Israel has seen a spate of terrorist attacks in the past month. Last week, a gunman killed at least five people in an attack in the Israeli city of Bnei Brak, near Tel Aviv.

Prior to that, the so-called "Islamic State" (IS) claimed responsibility for the killing of two people in the Israeli city of Hadera and a man killed four people in a stabbing spree in the Negev desert.

Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett convened an emergency meeting with top security officials last week to address the slew of violent attacks. He pledged to combat terrorism "with perseverance, stubbornness and an iron fist."

This has put authorities on alert, with law enforcement carrying out various raids and searching homes in Arab neighborhoods.

Increased tension as Ramadan begins

The start of the holy month of Ramadan has seen an uptick in bloodshed and tensions, with an increase in violent incidents in both Israel and the West Bank.

The Palestinian health ministry said Israeli forces shot dead a 29-year-old Palestinian man, identified as Ahmad al-Atrash by the Wafa Palestinian news agency, during clashes in Hebron. 

Al-Atrash was protesting Israeli settlements when he was killed. He previously had served six years in an Israeli prison.

The Israeli army said al-Atrash "hurled a Molotov cocktail" at soldiers during a "riot," adding soldiers "responded with live fire."

Hebron is the biggest city on the West Bank. Around 1,000 Jewish residents live under heavy Israeli military protection compared to the 200,000 Palestinian residents.

Israel has been present in the West Bank since the 1967 Six-Day War. Roughly half a million Israeli settlers live in the West Bank in communities regarded as illegal under international law.

ar/jcg (AFP, Reuters)