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Israeli forces detain 23 Palestinians in overnight West Bank raids

Jan. 30, 2017 6:42 P.M. (Updated: Jan. 31, 2017 9:54 A.M.)
BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) -- Israeli forces detained at least 23 Palestinians, including former prisoners, during overnight and predawn raids Monday across the occupied West Bank, according to Palestinian and Israeli sources. 

Israeli forces carry out detention raids across the occupied Palestinian territory on a near-nightly basis, with the UN recording an average of 95 weekly raids in the West Bank in 2016.

According to prisoners’ rights group Addameer, 7,000 Palestinians were detained in Israeli prisons as of October 2016.

Hebron district

According to local activist Muhammad Ayyad Awwad, 26-year-old Mahmoud Haitham al-Salibi, who spent three years in Israeli prisons, was detained from the Hebron-area village of Beit Ummar. 

Also in Beit Ummar, Israeli forces summoned 37-year-old former prisoner Yousif Badr Ikhlayyil, who had spent four years in Israeli custody, for interrogation at the Gush Etzion detention center 

Awwad added that Mazen Abu Atwan, Munir Samir Abu Sharar, and Khalil Ahmad Amro were detained from the village of Dura, while Islam al-Asafin was detained from the city of Hebron.

An Israeli army spokesperson confirmed to Ma’an a total of six detentions from the Hebron district, citing two from Hebron city, three from the village of Dura, and one from Beit Ummar. 

Bethlehem district

Though Palestinian sources did not report any detentions from the Bethlehem area in the southern west Bank, the Israeli army told Ma’an that army forces detained two Palestinians from the village of Nahhalin, and one from the village of al-Khader. 

Jerusalem district

In the central West Bank Jerusalem district, the Palestinian Prisoner’s Society (PPS) reported that five Palestinians were detained from across the Jerusalem-area villages of Qatanna, Biddu, and al-Ram. 

The detainees were identified as Mahmoud Muhammad Taha, Ahmad Issa Mansour, Hamad Nasser al-Khadour and former prisoners Muhammad Abed and Rafat al-Hathalin. 

An Israeli army spokesperson confirmed five Jerusalem area detentions to Ma’an, citing two from al-Ram, two from Biddu, and one from Qatanna.

Ramallah district

An Israeli army spokesperson told Ma’an that two Palestinian were detained from the central West Bank Ramallah district, noting one detention from Ramallah city and one from the village of Kharbatha al-Misbah.

Separately, locals told Ma’an that Israeli forces raided two print shops in central Ramallah city, closing them and seizing equipment and computers.

The Israeli army claimed in a statement that the raids and seizing of equipment were part of a campaign against “incitement.”

Tulkarem district

The Israeli army reported that Israeli forces detained two Palestinians from the northern West Bank district of Tulkarem, citing one “Hamas operative” from the village of Anabta, and one detention from the village of Saffarin.

Jenin district

In the northernmost West Bank district of Jenin, PPS reported that Israeli forces detained Wael Azmi Abu Hanana.

The Israeli army confirmed one detention from the Jenin-area village of Arrana. 

Separately, Israeli forces raided the Jenin refugee camp and Jenin city on Monday before dawn.

Eyewitnesses told Ma’an that Israeli forces raided the area and seized the security cameras on al-Nasra Street northeast of Jenin city for unknown reasons.

Locals added that Israeli forces questioned Palestinian youths passing in the street and detained some of them briefly.

Meanwhile, security sources told Ma’an that Israeli forces also raided Jenin refugee camp causing clashes to erupt as Israeli forces opened fire during the clashes.
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