IDF launches major military offensive in West Bank against Palestinian terrorists

Monday's operation saw seven people killed


An Israeli operation in the West Bank city of Jenin, on July 3, 2023. Photo by Nasser Ishtayeh/Flash90 *** Local Caption *** ???????? ??????? ???? ????? ?????? ????????? ??????

The Israeli army have launched drone strikes in the West Bank as part of an "extensive counterterrorism effort".

The Israeli Defence Forces (IDF) said its forces had struck a "joint operations centre" in Jenin on Monday. The centre served as a command post for the "Jenin Brigade", a local militant group.

The army said the early-Monday operation targeted an "observation and reconnaissance" site, as well as a weapons storage facility and a hideout for those alleged to have carried out attacks on Israeli targets in recent months.

IDF spokesman Richard Hecht added on Monday: “People were aware that we were probably going in but the method of striking from the air and our target was right in the core of the camp basically caught them by surprise.”

According to the IDF, seven Palestinians had been killed as of Monday morning. The Palestinian Health Ministry reported five deaths and 27 injuries. 

An Israeli soldier was lightly wounded during the operation from shrapnel from a grenade thrown by other Israeli forces, the IDF said. He was evacuated to a hospital for further treatment.

Mahmoud al-Saadi, director of the Palestinian Red Crescent in Jenin, said: “There is bombing from the air and an invasion from the ground.

"Several houses and sites have been bombed... smoke is rising from everywhere."

The operation comes two weeks after an Israeli army raid in Jenin refugee camp left seven people dead, and saw rare use of helicopter missile fire.

Israel has stepped up operations in the northern West Bank, home to Jenin city and its adjacent refugee camp, which is a stronghold of Palestinian armed groups.

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