Palestinians strike following Israel’s killing of Udai Tamimi [with Fatah’s backing]

Palestinians walk in an empty street in Ramallah, during a general strike in protest of the killing of Udai Tamimi (TNA)

Ibrahim Husseini

The New Arab  /  October 20, 2022

Various Palestinian factions declared Thursday a day of mourning for Udai Tamimi, a 21-year-old Palestinian man who was killed in a gunfight with Israeli security guards Wednesday evening.

Shops and schools in East Jerusalem were shut, as multiple Palestinian cities across the West Bank went on a general strike.

Udai Tamimi had evaded capture for nearly two weeks after killing an Israeli soldier at a checkpoint in occupied East Jerusalem and resurfaced for a second attack before being killed. 

Video footage showed Tamimi on the ground with a gun, firing shots apparently at Israeli guards at the Jewish settlement of Ma’ale Adumim in the occupied West Bank.

On October 8, he arrived at the Shuafat refugee camp checkpoint with a handgun and opened fire at close range, killing an Israeli soldier and wounding two other security personnel. Then, on October 19, he struck again. This time, at the Ma’ale Adumim settlement near the Palestinian town of Ezariya.

Tamimi went into hiding after the attack on the Shuafat checkpoint, and the Israeli security apparatus initiated a broad campaign to capture him but failed.

His success in hiding for eleven days, surfacing again at another checkpoint, and engaging settlement guards is notable, and he quickly became a popular figure of Palestinian resistance.

As the news spread Wednesday night of his death, young armed men strode the streets of the Jenin refugee camp, chanting, “Udai, you kept our heads held up high.”

During the early hours of Thursday, Palestinian fighters launched four separate attacks at Israeli army positions in Nablus and Jenin in retaliation to the killing of Udai Tamimi.  

“The blood of Udai and the blood of Palestine’s martyrs are fuel to the fury….,” the Lions’ Den group said in a statement. 

In a tweet, the Israeli army wrote: “Earlier today an improvised explosive device was hurled from a moving vehicle towards IDF soldiers in Nablus. IDF soldiers responded with live fire towards the moving vehicle. The assailants managed to escape & the vehicle was later found abandoned with another explosive device.”

The Israeli PM Yair Lapid commended the Israeli security forces for ‘eliminating’ Udai Tamimi.

Benny Gantz, the Israeli Defence Minister, praised the settlement’s security guards for their ‘vigilance’ and for preventing ‘further harm to human life.’

Tamimi hails from the Shuafat refugee camp, home to more than a hundred thousand Palestinians, and holds an Israeli ID.

Israeli forces took measurements of the Tamimi home days after the Shufat attack. The standard procedure by the army precedes the blowing up of a structure in retaliation to an attack.

174 Palestinians have been killed by Israeli forces since the start of the year, according to the Palestinian ministry of health.

Unrest is likely to continue that is if it does not escalate further.

13 Israelis, including four soldiers and nine civilians, were killed in the same period.

On June 5, 1967, Israel launched an attack against Egypt, Syria and Jordan. In just a few days, Israeli forces seized the Sinai, the Syrian Golan heights, and the West Bank, including East Jerusalem. The latter was then under Jordanian rule.

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Fatah backs general strike in occupied West Bank 

Middle East Monitor  /  October 20, 2022

The Palestinian Fatah movement is backing a comprehensive general strike today, Thursday, across the occupied West Bank. The strike was called “to mourn the soul of the martyr Uday al-Tamimi, and to condemn the crimes of the Israeli occupation.”

In a statement on Wednesday, the movement called for “an escalation of confrontations” with the Israeli occupation authorities as an “affirmation of the approach to national struggle.”

The 22-year-old Palestinian Al-Tamimi was shot dead by Israeli security guards on Wednesday evening at the entrance to an illegal settlement near Jerusalem, after he shot one of them. He had been on the run since he is alleged to have shot and killed an Israeli soldier on 8 October at the Shuafat military checkpoint. Israel has spent the past eleven days searching for him.

Dozens of Palestinian youths went onto the streets of Ramallah, Jenin, Bethlehem and Shuafat refugee camp in spontaneous rallies when news of his death filtered through. They condemned the killing and demanded a response.

In Gaza, meanwhile, several Palestinian factions mourned Al-Tamimi in separate statements. He was adopted by Hamas, which described him as “heroic” and “our martyr”.

“Tamimi’s determination to resist the occupation solidifies the pillars of our people’s revolution against the criminal occupation, sends a message of defiance to it from the heart of Jerusalem, and warns the occupation of dark days in which their soldiers and the guards of their settlements will be targeted,” said the movement. “Al-Quds [Jerusalem] and its men… respond to the call of Al-Aqsa Mosque and affirm its sanctity and the right of our people to it as a mosque exclusively for Muslims. The occupation will never have a right to it.”

Hamas called on the “Palestinians and the revolutionaries to follow in his [Tamimi’s] footsteps, follow his path, and activate all means to protect Al-Aqsa, the foremost of which is to go to the mosque and stay there, as well as escalating comprehensive resistance.”

The Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine said that Uday al-Tamimi “died a martyr after causing the Zionist state to be in a state of hysteria and terror… and exhausted the security services for several consecutive days.” The PFLP told Anadolu that, “The heroic operation carried out by Al-Tamimi, and its important achievements confirmed the failure of all attempts to separate the occupied city of Jerusalem from our people and our cause.” It called on the Palestinian leadership to “provide all resources to enhance the steadfastness of our people and the families of the martyrs among them.”

According to Islamic Jihad Tamimi’s “martyrdom” will not stop the intifada and clashes throughout the occupied West Bank. “The crimes of the occupation against our people in Jerusalem and the West Bank will not succeed in breaking the strength of our people, and the example set by the martyr Uday in breaking the security system and killing its status will be inspiring to all our resistance fighters and our people.”