Israel’s Massive Airstrike Hits West Bank

Israeli forces killed at least eight Palestinians and injured dozens more on Monday in their latest large-scale raid on Jenin refugee camp in the occupied West Bank, deploying hundreds of troops and launching at least 10 strikes of drones – the biggest aerial attack on the besieged territory for almost twenty years.

Al Jazeera reported that a “convoy of dozens of Israeli armored vehicles also surrounded the refugee camp and launched a military ground operation, causing extensive damage to homes and roads. »

Walid al-Omari, Al Jazeera’s bureau chief in Jerusalem, said Israeli soldiers “impose a total siege on the camp, while special forces operate inside the camp, raiding homes, search and arrest many people. »

The massive raid has raised concern from human rights groups and the United Nations. Lynn Hastings, the UN humanitarian coordinator in Palestine, wrote on Twitter early Monday that she was “alarmed by the scale of the Israeli forces operation in Jenin.”

“Air strikes were used against the densely populated refugee camp. Several people died or were seriously injured. Access to all injured must be ensured,” added Hastings.

Advocacy organization Jewish Voice for Peace said in response to the Jenin raid that “this is how the Israeli government treats Gaza, and now Netanyahu has extended it to the occupied West Bank.”

“We demand accountability: End US military funding to Israel now,” the group tweeted.

The Palestinian Red Crescent Society said the number of Palestinians injured in the Israeli raid was “increasing” and called for “safe passage to evacuate the wounded.” »

Monday’s raid came just two weeks after Israeli forces killed several Palestinians, including two 15-year-old children, in an attack on the Jenin refugee camp, which Israel’s far-right government says it serves as a “hub” for “terrorist activities”. This latest attack also comes amid growing violence by settlers in the West Bank.

Israeli Foreign Minister Eli Cohen said on Monday that “we are not fighting against the Palestinians”, but against “the proxies of Iran in our region, that is to say mainly Hamas and the Islamic jihad. »

Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, meanwhile, called the raid “a new war crime against our defenseless people.” »

“Security and stability will not be achieved in the region until the Palestinian people feel it,” Abbas said.

A 60-year-old Jenin camp resident told Al Jazeera that Israeli forces fired live ammunition at his house and injured his 25-year-old niece, who was from Jordan.

“The bullet pierced his leg and came out the other side,” the woman said. We found at least three bullets on our front door and others on the walls. »

On Monday, Cohen denied that the Israeli government, led by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and riddled with extremists, was planning to expand its operations in Jenin to the entire West Bank.

But Amjad Iraqi, editor of +972 magazine and a Palestinian citizen of Israel, warned last week that “far from being isolated incidents, the airstrikes [on Jenin] reveal a dangerous phase in the evolution of the Israeli occupation. »

“Like Gaza, Jenin has long been a center of Palestinian social life and political resistance and, as such, a target of vicious repression,” Iraqi writes. “Gaza is far from an exception to Israeli apartheid rule. Rather, it is the bantustan par excellence – the model of controlling and weakening an indigenous population in a beleaguered space, using modern weapons and technology, with local leaders to meet their basic needs, at minimal cost to the settler society around them. »

“West Bank hubs like Jenin and Nablus, already subject to various forms of closure and invasion, now have a glimpse of what lies ahead,” he added.

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This article is originally published on .les-crises.fr

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