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Israeli forces detain 20 Palestinians in overnight raids

March 27, 2017 8:06 P.M. (Updated: April 12, 2017 2:48 P.M.)
RAMALLAH (Ma'an) -- Israeli forces detained at least 20 Palestinians in predawn military raids across the occupied Palestinian territory between Sunday and Monday, Palestinian and Israeli sources said.

The Palestinian Prisoner's Society (PPS) reported that Israeli forces detained four Palestinians in the northern occupied West Bank district of Tulkarem, identifying them as Raafat Jamil Nassif, 50, Alaa Khalid Ismail, 23, Ahmad Yousif Abu Harb, 34, and Hamza Yahya, 24.

The Hamas movement confirmed the detention of Nassif, a leader in the party, adding that he had previously spent a total of 15 years in Israeli custody.

An Israeli army spokesperson told Ma’an that two Palestinians had been detained in the city of Tulkarem, including one “Hamas operative.”

Elsewhere in the northern occupied West Bank, PPS reported the detention of Muhammad Farouq Ayyad in the Jenin district, and of journalist Ayoub Mazouz Hassan in the Qalqiliya district.

The army spokesperson told Ma’an that one Palestinian was detained in the Jenin-area village of Kafr Dan.

The Freedom Theater, meanwhile, reported that Israeli forces had raided the home of Rania Wasfi, a program coordinator for the Palestinian arts organization in the Jenin refugee camp, at dawn on Monday.

“They stayed for about 45 minutes, turning the house upside down: mattresses, sheets, clothes, even the saucepans in the kitchen were torn down from the shelves, the fridge was searched, everything,” Wasfi said. “When they left, they apologised for disturbing us. I asked: ‘What about the mess you made?’ They answered that an apology was all I would get.”

In the central West Bank district of Ramallah, PPS stated that Israeli forces detained three Palestinians, identified as Jihad Sari Wahdan, Muataz Samih Wahdan, and Zeid Samhan Wahdan.

The army confirmed three detentions in the village of Rantis, and another detention in Kafr Nima.

In the Bethlehem district, PPS said that six Palestinians -- Alaa Muhammad Taqatqa, Issam Muhammad Taqatqa, Munir Muhammad Taqatqa, Fayiz Ali Derayya, Yahya Hani Jadu, and Alaa Muhammad Hreimi -- were detained by Israeli forces.

The army confirmed four detentions in the village of Beit Fajjar, two in the city of Bethlehem, and one in the nearby village of Arab Al-Rashayida.

In the southern occupied West Bank district of Hebron, Israeli forces detained a Palestinian woman identified Tahani Hashim Jabir, according to PPS. The Israeli army did not mention any detentions in the Hebron district.

In occupied East Jerusalem, PPS said that Israeli forces detained Luay Abu al-Saad and Suleiman Abu Mayyala.

According to prisoners rights group Addameer, 6,500 Palestinians, including four lawmakers, were detained by Israel as of January.

Israeli raids in Palestinian towns, villages, and refugee camps are a daily occurrence in the occupied West Bank. The UN recorded an average of 95 weekly raids in the occupied West Bank in 2016, and 78 weekly raids on average thus far in 2017.

An earlier version of this story mistakenly reported that Raafat Jamil Nassif was a member of the Palestinian Legislative Council. He is not. Ma'an regrets this error.
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