In Two Weeks, Israel Carried Out 160 Searches of Palestinian Homes

Photo: OCHA

Jerusalem, MINA – Israeli forces carried out 160 search and arrest operations across the West Bank in the period between January 16 and 29 resulting in the killing of a Palestinian man, dozens of injuries and detention of 187 Palestinians, including 23 children, the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) said in its biweekly Protection of Civilians report published on Friday.

Ahmad Ismail Jarrar, 31, was shot and killed by Israeli forces on 18 January during a search and arrest operation in Jenin city. According to Israeli sources, the killing occurred during the course of an exchange of fire with armed Palestinians, Wafa News Agency reported, Saturday (3/2).

Israeli forces also bulldozed three homes and a greenhouse during the incident, displacing 16 Palestinians. Another 12 Palestinians were injured during subsequent clashes with Israeli forces. The operation was reportedly aimed at arresting the suspected perpetrators of a shooting attack on 9 January that resulted in the killing of an Israeli settler.

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The Hebron governorate recorded the highest number of operations (50), followed by Bethlehem (29), and Jerusalem governorates (24), it said.

Overall, 274 Palestinians, including 67 children, were injured by Israeli forces during clashes across the occupied Palestinian territories during the reporting period, said OCHA.

Of these, 130 injuries, including 20 near the Gaza perimeter fence, were recorded in demonstrations against the US recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel on December 6 – a decline compared to the number of injuries in the same context during the first two weeks of January where 191 injuries were reported.

Another 92 Palestinians were injured in clashes with Israeli forces, after the latter intervened following confrontations between Palestinians and Israeli settler groups that entered three Palestinian localities: Madama in Nablus, Azzun in Qalqiliya and Nablus city.

Two Palestinian children aged 14 and 16 years were shot and injured by Israeli forces at Za’tara checkpoint south of Nablus after they reportedly attempted to stab Israeli soldiers. Both children were subsequently arrested.

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In the Gaza Strip, Israeli forces opened fire in the access restricted areas on land and on sea on 13 occasions, resulting in no casualties but disrupting the work of farmers and fishermen. On another two occasions, Israeli forces carried out land-levelling and excavation operations in the vicinity of the perimeter fence in Deir al Balah, and northeast of Khan Younis.

The Israeli authorities demolished 10 Palestinian structures in the West Bank, on grounds of lack of an Israeli-issued building permit, displacing seven people. Six of these structures had been provided to families in the Bedouin community of Al Jiftlik Abu Al Ajaj in the Jericho district, as a humanitarian response to a previous demolition.

Another two structures, two multi-story buildings under construction, were located in the community of Bir Ona, which falls within the Jerusalem municipal boundaries, but is physically severed from the city by the separation barrier. Additionally, Israeli forces bulldozed four dunums of land, damaging around 400 tree saplings near Al Khadr in Bethlehem, on grounds that the area has been designated as “State Land”.

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Five Israeli settler attacks resulting in Palestinian injuries or property damage were reported. An 18-year-old youth and his 55-year-old mother were physically assaulted and injured by a group of Israeli settlers, while grazing sheep in the Al Mu’arrajat area of Jericho; two vehicles were set on fire in Beit Safafa (East Jerusalem); 12 vehicles were vandalized at the entrance to Beit Iksa village (Jerusalem); and 85 trees were uprooted or damaged in the villages of Nabi Samuel (Jerusalem) and Aqraba (Nablus), according to the OCHA report.

According to an Israeli media report, the Israeli Police arrested an Israeli settler from Betar Illit settlement (Bethlehem), suspected of at least six violent attacks against Palestinians employed in this settlement.(R/R04/RE1)


Mi’raj News Agency (MINA)