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IDF reportedly finishes 2-day Jenin counter-terrorism op, terrorists were hiding in hospital

Jenin has been a terror hotspot since the First Intifada

Israeli special forces operate in Jenin, July 2023 (Photo: IDF)

Earlier this week, Israel Defense Forces, the Border Police and Shin Bet domestic intelligence launched a counter-terrorism operation in the city of Jenin, located in the northern West Bank

Jenin has been the source of many terrorists and terror cells since the First Intifada (1989-1993). 

Israel regularly conducts counter-terrorism operations in the city to prevent the accumulation of weapons and the formation of terror cells.

In July 2023, the IDF carried out "Operation Home and Garden," and in December, they launched an even more extensive operation, the largest Israeli military effort in the West Bank since the Second Intifada ended in 2005, deploying 1,300 soldiers. The limited operation was launched after Shin Bet revealed the activity of armed terrorists affiliated with the Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad terrorist organizations, as well as the presence of terrorist infrastructure. IDF soldiers exchanged fire with armed terrorists, eliminating a number of them, including two who had thrown improvised explosive devices (IEDs) at the troops. 

Israeli military forces engaged the terrorists and discovered several caches of weapons. During the operation, over both days, several IEDs planted underneath streets in Jenin were exploded, either deliberately by IDF bulldozers or by terrorists attempting to injure the fighters. 

On Tuesday afternoon, an armed terrorist was spotted by forces. He was seen entering the hospital, where he barricaded himself. 

The IDF spokesman’s office commented: “This is another example of the cynical use of humanitarian infrastructure by militants in the Jenin area, including hospitals as shelters and hiding places.” 

On Thursday morning, a terror squad fired at IDF troops while attempting an ambush. A drone operator from the IDF's 636th Battalion spotted the terrorist squad escaping to the nearby hospital. 

The soldiers followed the squad and managed to locate their vehicles in the hospital parking lot, where the terrorists had abandoned their weapons and fled. IDF soldiers broke into the vehicles and confiscated the weapons. 

Some of the IDF involved in the fighting recently left the ground campaign in the Gaza Strip and said there is essentially no difference between Gaza and Jenin in terms of terrorist activities.

“We encountered militants here and eliminated them. We're scanning house-to-house here. We have already found weapons and IEDs, the terrorists are trying to hit us with both gunfire and IEDs,” IDF Lt.-Col. David Levy, commander of the Haruv Reconnaissance Battalion in the Kfir Brigade, told Ynet News.

“The complexity here is that we need to be more surgeons so as not to harm uninvolved civilians.” 

The IDF reported that it eliminated at least 7 terrorists, including Islam Khamayseh, who was partially responsible for the death of Israeli civilian Meir Tamari last year. The IDF also demolished the home of Ahmed Barakat, another terrorist who was involved in Tamari’s death. 

As Israeli forces were leaving Jenin earlier today, a very large IED exploded. Videos of the explosion were uploaded to social media. The IDF has not yet released any confirmation of casualties or wounded from the explosion.  

The All Israel News Staff is a team of journalists in Israel.

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