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Israel Conducts Multiple Violent Raids in Occupied Palestinian Territories

Israeli forces carried out raids in various towns and villages across Palestine, arresting 14 Palestinians including a former prisoner. Despite the ongoing global COVID-19 crisis, the Israeli state has kept up its policies of oppression.
Israel Conducts Multiple Violent Raids in Occupied Palestinian Territories

Israeli soldiers take down street signs with the Palestinian Authority's logo in the Kafr Aqab town in occupied East Jerusalem, on Thursday. (Photo: Mustafa Harish)

Israeli occupation forces carried out multiple violent raids and arrests in towns and villages across the occupied West Bank and occupied East Jerusalem on April 23, Thursday. In the simultaneous raids conducted in early hours of the morning, Israeli forces abducted and arrested as many as 14 Palestinians, including a former prisoner. Israeli soldiers also clashed at some places with Palestinian youth who tried to resist the violent raids. Israeli forces responded with stun grenades, tear gas canisters and rubber-coated steel bullets against the Palestinians.

As per reports by Palestinian news agency WAFA and multiple other news outlets, Israel raided the district of Jenin in northern West Bank and abducted two Palestinians from the town of Arraba. Another raid was conducted in the northern West Bank city of Tulkarem from where a former Palestinian prisoner was arrested. At least nine more Palestinians were picked up after similar raids were carried out in the Azzoun village of Qalqiliya district, the central West Bank village of Kufr Nimeh near Ramallah, Bethlehem in southern West Bank and the nearby Taqoa town, and in the city of Hebron. Soldiers barged into Palestinian homes, causing extensive damage to private belongings and property. 

Israeli soldiers on Thursday also invaded the town of Kafr Aqab in occupied East Jerusalem. According to local news reports, the Israelis damaged town property and destroyed and took down street signs, including all signs and public banners of the Palestinian Authority (PA) and carrying its logo. The Israeli forces used tear gas canisters, stun grenades and rubber-coated steel bullets to attack Palestinian youths who were protesting this destruction of public property. 

Despite the ongoing global COVID-19 crisis, the Israeli state has kept up its criminal policies of oppression in the occupied Palestinian territories, exacerbating an already fragile situation. According to PA data, Palestine has already confirmed 480 cases of COVID-19, resulting in four deaths, as of April 24. With very limited financial and medical resources at hand, preventing the further spread of the novel coronavirus in the Palestinian territories remains a significant challenge. 

The brutal Israeli occupation however remains undeterred. Israel has further been accused of disregarding many of the internationally prescribed COVID-19 containment guidelines and has been allegedly flouting physical distancing norms including through its continued violent raids and arrests. In addition, the Israeli state, as an occupying power, has failed to provide adequate testing, protective gear and medical supplies to check the pandemic’s outbreak in the occupied Palestinian territories, in contravention of its obligations under international law and various international conventions.

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