IDF arrests 19 Palestinian suspects in overnight West Bank raids

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Israeli troops carried out raids throughout the West Bank late Sunday and early Monday, arresting 19 Palestinians and escorting Jewish worshipers to a flashpoint holy site.

The Palestinian suspects were held on suspicion of participating in violent riots in recent weeks or involvement in terror-related activities, the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) said in a statement.

The army said 13 Palestinians were arrested in a “wide-scale operation” in the al-Arroub refugee camp, outside the southern West Bank city of Hebron, which came in response to an uptick in stone-throwing and firebomb attacks on Israeli vehicles traveling on the nearby Route 60.

“For the past few weeks, our patrols have been trying to halt daily attempts to attack commuters on Route 60 as part of their work securing the residents of the Etzion bloc,” the statement said.

The IDF said that troops found and confiscated an M16 rifle and ammunition during searches of al-Arroub.


Illustrative: Israeli soldiers who accompanied worshipers to the tombs of Jehoshua bin Nun and Caleb son of Jephunneh in the Palestinian village of Kifl Haris, in the West Bank on May 3, 2016. (Yaakov Naumi/Flash90)

In a separate raid overnight Sunday-Monday in the Jordan Valley, the army said six Palestinians were arrested for a variety of offenses, including participating in riots, rock-throwing, and involvement in terrorist activities.

Separately, IDF troops overnight escorted hundreds of Jewish worshipers to the tomb of Yehoshua bin Nun in the northern West Bank.

The army said 600 Jewish worshipers visited the holy site in the village of Kifl Haris, northwest of the Ariel settlement, without incident.

Security forces and worshipers have previously come under attack by local Palestinians on previous overnight pilgrimages.

Originally posted at Times of Israel.


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