Three armed Palestinians killed in clashes with IDF in Jenin

Three Palestinians were killed Friday morning in a shootout with Israel Defense Forces soldiers in the West Bank city of Jenin, Israeli and Palestinian officials said.

The Palestinian Authority Health Ministry said three people were killed and eight injured, including one in serious condition.

The IDF said troops from the elite Golani Reconnaissance Unit were operating in the city when they came under heavy fire and had explosive devices thrown at them.

They identified that the shots fired at them came from a stationary vehicle nearby. “The soldiers closed in on them and neutralized the gunmen who had opened fire,” the army said.

The military said soldiers found two M-16 rifles and a Carlo-type machine gun in the vehicle, along with several magazines of ammunition.

There were no Israeli casualties.

Firearms seized by Israeli troops in the West Bank city of Jenin on July 17, 2022. (Israel Defense Forces)

Palestinian reports said clashes began when an IDF force entered the town which has been the focus of recent violence. Videos of the scene posted on social media showed heavy gunfire as an IDF force entered the area.

Footage on social media showed the car’s bloodstained interior and bullet holes in the window.

Palestinian media identified the dead men as Baraa Lahlouh, Laith Abu Srour and Yousef Salah, with photos showing the young men holding automatic weapons, indicating they were members of a terrorist group. Hamas later claimed Lahlouh as a member, while the affiliations of Abu Srour and Salah were not immediately known.

Hundreds of angry residents gathered outside a hospital in Jenin, chanting “God is great” slogans and calling for revenge, before carrying the three bodies on stretchers and marching through town in a spontaneous protest.

Israeli security forces have stepped up operations in the West Bank following a deadly wave of terror attacks inside Israel that have claimed 19 lives since March 22. The raids focused on the increasingly volatile Jenin region, where several of the attackers were from.

An IDF soldier operating in the West Bank city of Jenin on June 7, 2022. Three Palestinians were killed in a shootout with Israeli forces (Israel Defense Forces)

At least 30 Palestinians were killed during the same period, according to the Palestinian Authority Health Ministry. Some were shot dead by Israeli soldiers while carrying out terror attacks, while others were engaged in violent firefights with soldiers, and still others – like Al Jazeera journalist Shireen Abu Akleh – were civilians.

Abu Akleh was killed in clashes between Israeli troops and Palestinian gunmen in Jenin.

A Palestinian investigation said an Israeli soldier shot her. Israel says it cannot say for sure who killed her until it examines the bullet, which the Palestinian Authority refuses to share.

AP contributed to this report

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