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Israeli forces ransack Tulkarem print shop, confiscate equipment

March 1, 2017 10:43 A.M. (Updated: March 1, 2017 9:28 P.M.)
TULKAREM (Ma'an) -- Israeli forces raided and ransacked a print ship in the northern occupied West Bank city of Tulkarem early Wednesday morning and confiscated equipment for unknown reasons.

Owner of the Ibn Khaldoun Company for Printing, Publishing, and Trade Abd al-Rahim Badawi told Ma'an that Israeli soldiers destroyed the exterior doors of the shop when they broke in, before destroying the interior and confiscating equipment, causing him huge financial losses.

Badawi said that he was shocked by the raid, especially as the print shop is fully licensed and legal and he had never received any warning that his business was suspected of wrongdoing by the Israeli army.

Witnesses told Ma’an that when Israeli forces raided Tulkarem city and its surroundings early Wednesday, several homes were also raided, in addition to the print shop. However, no detentions were reported as a result of the raids.

In November, a printing shop in the southern occupied West Bank town of Beit Ummar was raided a day after Israeli soldiers removed and stepped on a memorial poster commemorating a local youth that was killed by Israeli forces in the town a week prior.

Israeli forces have previously targeted printing shops where posters commemorating Palestinians killed by Israeli forces were manufactured. Since the beginning of the year, one Palestinian from Tulkarem was killed and another from the city succumbed to fatal injuries, after being shot by Israeli forces for allegedly attempting to commit attacks.

However, an Israeli army spokesperson could not immediately confirm the justification for Wednesday's raid, and said she was looking into the case.

When Israeli forces raided and shut down a print shop in Qalqiliya in December, an Israeli army spokesperson said it came as part of an “ongoing effort against incitement,” and that the institution was “suspected of distributing incitement materials.”

In recent months, Israel has targeted Palestinian media institutions and civilians, including activists and journalists, alleging that a wave of unrest that swept the occupied Palestinian territory in October 2015 was encouraged largely by "incitement."

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