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Israeli forces detain 19 Palestinians during overnight raids in West Bank

Aug. 31, 2017 4:19 P.M. (Updated: Sept. 1, 2017 6:16 P.M.)
BETHLEHEM (Ma'an) -- Israeli forces detained at least 19 Palestinians during overnight raids between Wednesday and Thursday across the occupied West Bank, while raiding toy shops in the Hebron district -- confiscating toy guns, fireworks, and laser pointers, of which the soldiers said could be used for “terrorism.”

In the northern West Bank, locals told Ma’an that Israeli forces raided the village of Yaabad in the Jenin district and detained a Palestinian “youth” from the al-Atatra family. An Israeli army spokesperson confirmed to Ma'an one detention in Yaabad.

Israeli forces also raided the Mirka village in Jenin and detained three brothers, identified by locals as Alaa, Hamza, and Yousif Jalboush. An Israeli army spokesperson confirmed two of the detentions in Mirka, saying one of the detainees was an alleged Hamas operative.

In the Nablus district, Israeli forces detained Osama Sawalma from the village of Asira al-Shamaliya, according to locals. However, an Israeli army spokesperson told Ma’an that two Palestinians were detained from the village over being alleged Hamas operatives.

The spokesperson added that one Palestinian was detained from the Balata refugee camp and one was detained from Nablus city.

In the central West Bank district of Ramallah, locals told Ma’an that Israeli forces had detained Ihab Suhdi Abu Shusha from the al-Amari refugee camp after raiding his family’s home. According to locals, Israeli forces had also demolished a car repair garage near the refugee camp.

An Israeli army spokesperson told Ma’an that six additional Palestinians were detained in the Ramallah district, including a Palestinian in the Rammun village who the spokesperson said was an alleged Hamas operative, another Palestinian in the village of Deir Abu Mashaal, and four Palestinians in Ramallah city.

In the southern West Bank district of Hebron, locals said that a Palestinian “youth,” identified as Muhammad Matar Abu Sharar was detained from Dura village.

Meanwhile, locals told Ma’an that three Palestinians were detained in the village of Bani Naim, identified as Rami Khalil Harahsheh, Muhammad Ghaleb Ideis, and Taleb Adra. An Israeli army spokesperson confirmed two of the detentions in Bani Naim.

Palestinian news agency Wafa reported that Israeli forces had also raided toy shops in Bani Naim, where they seized bead guns, paintball guns, fireworks, and laser pointers. A statement was posted on the shops’ doors announcing that the possession of such toys were banned because they "could be used by terrorists,” according to Wafa.

Israeli raids in Palestinian towns, villages, and refugee camps are a daily occurrence in the West Bank and East Jerusalem, with a biweekly average of 85 search and detention raids carried thus far in 2017, according to UN documentation.

According to prisoners’ rights group Addameer, 6,128 Palestinians were detained by Israel as of July, 320 of whom were children. The group has estimated that some 40 percent of Palestinian men will be detained by Israel at some point in their lives.
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