BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) -- Israeli forces conducted large-scale raids across the occupied Palestinian territory overnight Monday, targeting in particular the northern West Bank district of Qalqiliya, detaining a total of at least 28 Palestinians and ransacking several homes.
Locals told Ma’an that Israeli forces detained 10 Palestinian men from Qalqiliya after midnight, while an Israeli army spokesperson said 20 had been detained.
Locals identified those detained as Amin Sasa, Mushir Jeidi, Anas Farraj, Yousif Abu Shihab, Thaer Ali Ibtli, Hindi Zeid, Sharhabil Shubaki, Iyad Jueidi, Ibrahim Hindi, and Shahir Jueidi.
During the raids, Israeli forces ransacked and inspected several homes in the city, damaging the interiors and upending furniture, according to locals.
Among the houses Israeli soldiers ransacked and inspected were those of Rafiq Abu Samra, Shakir Hbeis, Abu Salim Jueidi, Nabil Hotari, and Luay Yasin.
In the southern occupied West Bank district of Bethlehem, Israeli forces stormed the town of al-Khader and broke into home of 55-year-old Ahmad Muhammad Salah to detain his 29-year-old son Muhammad.
Spokesperson of the town’s local committee against Israeli settlements and the separation wall Ahmad Salah told Ma’an that Israeli soldiers “violently” broke into the house thoroughly inspected the family’s belongings.
Israeli forces briefly detained and interrogated Ahmad Muhammad Salah and his older son Ashraf, threatening that if Muhammad Salah did not turn himself in, “we will return his dead body to you instead.” He turned himself in Tuesday afternoon.
Israeli intelligence officers provided no information to the family regarding the crimes for which Muhammad Salah was being held.
An Israeli army spokesperson said than one Palestinian was also detained in the village of Birqin west of Jenin in the northernmost West Bank district, and two were detained in the village of Surif in the southern West Bank district of Hebron.
She added that in the central occupied West Bank near Jerusalem, three Palestinians were detained in the village of Biddu, one in Qatanna, and one in Kafr Aqab.
Since the start of 2016, Israeli forces have conducted a weekly average of 88 search and detention operations in the West Bank and East Jerusalem, according to UN documentation.
According to Palestinian prisoners’ rights group Addameer, 7,000 Palestinians were being held in Israeli custody as of May. The organization estimates that 40 percent of Palestinian men have been detained by Israel at least once in their lives.