Teen among four Palestinians killed by Israeli forces in West Bank raids

Middle East Eye  /  March 9, 2023

The killings take this year’s Palestinian death toll to at least 78, including 14 children and a woman.

Israeli forces killed three Palestinians on Thursday morning following a raid in the occupied West Bank city of Jenin, according to the Palestinian health ministry. 

Separately, 14-year-old Walid Saad Daoud Nassar from Jenin also died on Thursday as a result of critical wounds sustained on Tuesday from Israeli forces who shot him, in a raid that killed six other Palestinians. 

The Palestinian health ministry named the deceased from today’s raid as Sufyan Adnan Ismail Fakhouri, 26, Nayef Ahmed Yusef Malaysha, 25, and Ahmed Muhammad Dheeb Fashafsha, 22. It added that the three men were killed at close range by Israeli forces. 

According to the Israeli border police, undercover officers entered the Palestinian village of Jaba, south of Jenin, to arrest two Palestinians when they were allegedly opened fire upon. Israeli forces returned fire killing all three men.

Speaking to the Palestinian Wafa news agency, a local politician said special Israeli forces “infiltrated the town” and fired at the young men at point blank range. 

The large Israeli force also deployed snipers on rooftops and arrested another Palestinian. 

During the operation, a local wing of the Islamic Jihad in Jaba said its members had opened fire on Israeli forces and downed an Israeli drone. Israel confirmed that one of its drones had been downed without confirming the circumstances of its downing.

Bloodiest year for Palestinians

The latest killing takes this year’s death toll to at least 78, including 14 children and a woman. 

It’s the bloodiest start of a year since 2000, according to the Palestinian health ministry.

At least 13 Israelis were killed by Palestinians in the same period. 

In recent months there has been a notable shift in the army’s tactics, with deadly nighttime and daytime raids becoming common place. Israeli forces have also become more permissive in killing Palestinians. 

In another Jenin raid earlier this year, the Israeli military killed 10 Palestinians in a single day. Another similar large-scale operation in Nablus last month left 11 Palestinians killed, including at least four unarmed people. 

Nablus and Jenin have witnessed an uptick in armed resistance acts against Israeli targets in recent months, including several shootings targeting Jewish settlers.

With Muslim, Christian and Jewish holidays overlapping next month, many fear more deadly escalations could follow.