As heavily armed Israeli soldiers stormed the Jenin refugee camp in the occupied West Bank on Thursday, at least nine Palestinians, including an elderly woman, were killed and about 20 wounded.
The Palestinian Ministry of Health announced this morning that Israeli forces shot dead nine people, while a further 20 were wounded, with at least four of them in a critical condition.
Heavily armed soldiers entered the camp on Thursday morning, reportedly in a commercial truck, and opened fire on residents attempting to block their entry. Several other army vehicles, including bulldozers, then entered the area and targeted a building used as a meeting place for residents.
“The death toll in the Jenin camp stands at three at the moment,” Minister of Health Mai Al-Kaila told Palestine TV. “The situation in the camp is very difficult, and there are a number of wounded individuals who could not be reached by medical staff.”
Earlier today, eyewitnesses told Anadolu that Israeli troops stormed the Jenin camp, which led to fighting between dozens of Palestinians and the soldiers.
BDS Movement tweeted, saying: Apartheid Israel’s occupation forces brutally murdered at least 9 Palestinians, including an elderly woman, during a massacre in Jenin refugee camp this morning.
Many more were injured, including children suffering from teargas reportedly fired in a hospital.
Israel’s massacre in Jenin today included violent attacks on a hospital, ambulances, and many homes. The US and Europe, through funding & arming apartheid Israel and shielding it from accountability, are partners in crime.
Live ammunition and steel-coated rubber bullets were fired by the Israelis, as well as tear gas canisters.
For months, the West Bank has witnessed a significant escalation in tension as a result of Israeli raids and arrests of Palestinian activists. Clashes have erupted between Israeli soldiers and armed illegal settlers on one side, and Palestinian civilians on the other.
Abbas: massacre against Palestinians
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas’s office said the killings were “a massacre from the Israeli occupation government, in the shadow of international silence”.
“This is what encourages the occupation government to commit massacres against our people in full view of the world,” said Nabil Abu Rudeineh, spokesperson for Abbas.
The president declared three days of national mourning, and ordered flags to be flown at half-mast.
A general strike was also declared on Thursday across the occupied West Bank and Jerusalem. Fatah, which controls the Palestinian Authority, called on Palestinians to confront Israeli forces at checkpoints, Wafa news agency reported.
The elderly woman shot in the neck during the raid was identified as 60-year-old Magda Obaid.
The fatalaties also included Saeb Issam Mahmoud Izreiqi, 24, and Izzidin Yassin Salahat, 26.
Palestinian Health Minister Mai al-Kaileh said that Red Crescent medical workers were unable to evacuate the wounded due to Israeli soldiers restricting access to the refugee camp.
He added that Israeli forces “stormed Jenin Government Hospital and intentionally fired tear gas canisters at the paediatric department in the hospital”.
Israel’s army confirmed reports of soldiers entering the camp, claiming that it was in response to intelligence reports about a “terror attack” being planned.
The latest killings bring the death toll of Palestinians killed this year to 29.
At least 220 people died in Israeli attacks across the occupied territories in 2022, including 48 children. Of the total death toll, 167 were from the West Bank and East Jerusalem, and 53 were from the Gaza Strip.
Israeli forces conduct near-nightly search-and-arrest operations in the West Bank, which often turn deadly.
Most of the raids in recent months have focused on Nablus and Jenin, where Israel is cracking down on a growing Palestinian armed resistance in the occupied cities.
Hamas strongly condemns the massacre
On its part, the Palestinian Islamic Resistance Movement (Hamas) has strongly condemned the massacre committed by Zionist occupation forces in Jenin camp this morning.
“The Zionist regime’s massacre is an example of the new right-wing fascist zionist cabinet that instructed the Israeli soldiers to use more violence against the Palestinians,” Hisham Qasem, a member of the Hamas politburo abroad, in a written statement.
Qasem confirmed that the escalating zionist violence and calculated killing of Palestinian citizens will not break the will of the Palestinian people, noting that the resistance will continue to defend the Palestinian people against Israeli violations.
The Hamas official called on the Palestinian people across Palestine to express their solidarity with the Palestinian people in Jenin.