At least three Palestinians killed, including two intelligence operatives, in a pre-dawn Israeli raid in the city of Jenin, in the occupied West Bank.
Israeli forces shot dead at least three Palestinians, including two Palestinian Authority (PA) military intelligence officers, in a pre-dawn raid in the occupied West Bank city of Jenin, Palestinian authorities said Thursday.
The Palestinian health ministry identified the two officers as Adham Yasser Alawi, 23, and Tayseer Issa, 32, the Palestinian Wafa news agency reported, adding that the third victim was Jamil al-Amuri, who had been imprisoned in Israeli jails.
Another Palestinian officer, Muhammad al-Bazour, 23, was seriously injured during the Israeli infiltration mission and was transferred to an Israeli hospital, according to Wafa.
An online video accessed by the Associated Press appears to show Palestinian officers taking cover behind a vehicle as gunshots are heard in the background. One of them shouts that they are exchanging fire with Israeli “secret” forces.
Israeli media reported that al-Amuri was a former prisoner and member of the Palestinian Islamic Jihad, but this has yet to be confirmed by Palestinian officials.
In a report from occupied East Jerusalem, Harry Fawcett of Al Jazeera said the incident was “an undercover operation in a civilian vehicle”.
“It is understood that they (Israeli forces) were targeting at least one member of the Palestinian Islamic Jihad.
“A guy was killed in this operation, and another was injured and taken away by Israeli forces. The man who was killed is believed to be a PIJ member, ”Fawcett said.
According to reports, the second man who was taken away was a Palestinian named Wissam Abu Zaid. He was reportedly arrested during the operation.
“Dangerous Israeli escalation”
A spokesman for Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas condemned what he called “a dangerous Israeli escalation”, saying the three men were killed by Israeli special forces who disguised themselves as Palestinians in arrest raids.
Spokesman Nabil Abu Rudaina called on the international community and the United States to intervene to end such attacks.
There are conflicting reports on the details of the incident.
The Israeli army and police did not immediately respond to requests for comment. However, an Israeli official told Reuters news agency anonymously that the Palestinian officers were killed in the crossfire.
“Witnesses on the ground say Israeli forces also shot at members of Palestinian military intelligence – officers who were near the scene, outside their own security building,” Al Fawcett said. Jazeera.
“The Israeli media are talking about the Israelis fighting back in their direction, but regardless, two of these military intelligence officers are known to have been killed and a third seriously injured and taken to an Israeli hospital.
“This is another case of Palestinian military intelligence officers killed by Israeli forces in the occupied West Bank,” he added.
Under the interim peace accords signed in the 1990s, the Palestinian Authority has limited autonomy in scattered enclaves that together make up about 40% of the occupied West Bank. Israel has the supreme security authority in the West Bank and regularly carries out arrest raids in Palestinian towns administered by the Palestinian Authority.
Under the 1993 Oslo Accords, the Palestinian Authority is obliged to share information with Israel on any armed resistance to the Israeli occupation in a practice known as “security coordination”, which has been briefly suspended last year after the Israeli plan to annex the occupied West Bank.
Hamas, which rules the Gaza Strip, criticized the Palestinian Authority for so-called “security coordination.” Many Hamas operatives have been arrested because of the PA’s cooperation with the Israeli authorities.
Israeli forces frequently carry out arrest raids in the occupied West Bank. On May 25, Israeli forces killed a Palestinian in one of these raids near Ramallah.
Palestinian media reported that after the withdrawal of Israeli forces from Jenin, Israel deployed reinforcements to the northern entrance to the Palestinian city.
Funeral processions will be held later Thursday for the three Palestinian men who were killed. Calls for a general strike have also been launched in Palestinian towns.
The incident comes weeks after a fragile peace was struck following an 11-day Israeli war on besieged Gaza that left more than 250 Palestinians dead, including 66 children.
At least 12 people have been killed in Israel in rocket attacks by Palestinian armed factions.