A marked departure from the past, the Israeli military employed combat helicopters for the first time in many years in the occupied West Bank, in response to unforeseen strong opposition from Palestinians during an arrest operation in Jenin.
Detailed Report of the Incident
According to Palestinian health officials, intense clashes continued until late Monday afternoon, resulting in the death of four Palestinians, among them a 15-year-old boy, and injuring 45 others, four critically. In a report by Israel’s Haaretz, a 15-year-old girl was purportedly shot within her home. Additionally, Hazem Nasser, a freelance journalist visibly wearing press gear, was wounded in the conflict.
The deceased Palestinians were identified as Ahmed Saqr, 15, Qassam Abu Saraya, 29, affiliated with Islamic Jihad, Khaled Asasa, 21, and Qais Jabareen, 21. The Israeli forces also sustained casualties with seven soldiers and militarized border police enduring light to moderate injuries.
Israel’s Kan public broadcaster announced that all remaining soldiers had been successfully withdrawn from Jenin by late Monday afternoon.
A Deeper Look at the Rising Tensions
The upswing of conflict in the West Bank, a territory occupied by Israel during the 1967 Middle East war, has intensified since early last year due to recurring Israeli army raids in response to a wave of Palestinian attacks.
Anticipating Future Developments
Senior Palestinian official Hussein al-Sheikh portrayed Monday’s clash as a “fierce and open war” led by Israel against the Palestinian people. Palestinian politician Mustafa Barghouti anticipates that the government of Benjamin Netanyahu, viewed as the most right-wing in Israeli history, may escalate to deploying fighter aircraft in the West Bank.
Menachem Klein, Professor Emeritus at Bar-Ilan University and a visiting professor in the war studies department at King’s College London, warned that Palestinian militants may interpret their resilience in the face of the raid as a victory, despite the substantial casualty toll.