After two days of shelling and house-to-house arrests, the Israeli army ends its operation in the Jenin refugee camp. The military announced earlier this Wednesday the official end of the incursion, in which it carried out aerial bombardments in the West Bank for the first time in nearly two decades and deployed more than a thousand soldiers, bulldozer and armored They have already withdrawn from the camp, where the funerals of the 12 dead Palestinians were held, at least half of whom were militants.
Violence escalated in the final hours of the raid. Towards dawn, when Israeli troops began to regroup for their retreat, the most serious clashes took place with the remaining guerrillas in the camp, and five rockets were fired from Gaza. They were all intercepted by the missile defense system. Israel announced shortly afterwards that one of its non-commissioned officers was shot dead while securing its withdrawal. He was identified as First Sergeant David Yehuda Yizhak, 23 and a resident of the settler settlement of Beit, EFE news agency reported.
This morning the Army bombed two installations in the Strip, without causing any casualties. “This attack has significantly hampered the escalation efforts of the Hamas terrorist organization,” said the Israeli military, which holds the resistance group responsible for everything happening in the enclave.
The military operation to “eradicate terrorism and withdraw the threats” wanted by the most radical sector of the Israeli government and by the settler movement, which includes several of its ministers, ends with 30 arrests, the seizure of weapons and few direct clashes in the field. The aerial bombardments were not massive, but localised.
With the Israeli withdrawal, the streets that the armored vehicles traveled on a few hours ago have been filled since early morning with young people inspecting the damage and taking an interest in their neighbours. The thousands of camp residents who were evacuated, mainly women and children, have started to return to their homes. According to their testimonies, one party fled alone, while another was forced by threats from loudspeakers. The soldiers opened a corridor to let them out with their hands raised.
Dozens of Palestinians carried the bodies of the dead to families’ homes so that their mothers and sisters could say goodbye one last time before they were buried. Some youths fired M-16s and Kalashnikovs or handguns into the air to prove to both themselves and Israel that they were not defeated.
Join EL PAÍS to follow all the news and read without limits.
In the streets where the bulldozer, the asphalt is badly damaged. This was the main reason the electricity went out early the morning the operation started, explains Yazid Zudqi, technical manager of the power company’s Jenin branch, as about a dozen workers work to get the supply back on. , on the ground and at altitude. Zudqi Tower estimates three kilometers of underground power cables damaged, as well as four transformers. The first phase, he says, is to recover the general supply and, the second, that of housing. In total, it will take about five days.
The youths installed anti-tank barriers and explosives with butane canisters at the entrances to the camp to prevent the entry of cars with Israeli special units under cover. A military drone flew over the area, while the inhabitants assessed the damage and the asphalt raised by the passage of Israeli vehicles. On the outer walls of the houses seized by Israeli soldiers you can see the holes drilled for placing sniper weapons. A bloodstain on the floor marks where the Israeli soldier was rescued after being injured on the first floor, where there are gunshot marks.
That same Tuesday, Tel Aviv suffered an attack that left eight injured, four of whom are still hospitalized in serious condition. The alleged culprit was a 20-year-old Palestinian who sneaked from the southern West Bank into Israel, ran over and then stabbed passersby. An armed civilian shot him and then he fell to the ground. The Executive is making it easier for the population to obtain a permit for small arms to repel precisely this type of attack.
Gaza has just entered the scene, one of the major risks of escalation if the operation is prolonged. Just two months ago, Israel launched an offensive there against Islamic Jihad that killed 34 people in five days of shelling. Around midnight, Strip militias fired five rockets as troops retreated to Jenin. Shortly after, the Israeli air force bombed two structures linked to the Islamist movement Hamas, which governs in that territory.
The army resumed “its routine activity” early in the morning in the West Bank, under occupation since Israel’s victory in the 1967 Six-Day War and experiencing its highest peak of violence since the end of the Second Intifada in 2005. There they are 156 Palestinians have died so far this year. Also 26 Israelis, in several attacks that have increased in frequency.
Sign up to continue reading
Read without limits