Jerusalem, July 4 (EFE).- Israel’s largest military operation in the West Bank in the last two decades has left nine Palestinians dead and over 105 wounded so far, the Palestinian Red Crescent said Tuesday.
The death toll rose in the morning after the Palestinian Red Crescent found another body in the Horsh Al-Saada area in Jenin.
The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) launched an aerial and ground offensive, deploying over 1,000 soldiers in a massive overnight Sunday raid on the Jenin refugee camp in the northern West Bank, the largest since the Second Intifada uprising (2000-2005).
The Jenin camp is considered a stronghold for Palestinian militants.
In a statement on Tuesday, the IDF said it “continued to act to thwart terrorism.”
The Israeli forces located and destroyed an underground shaft that was used to store cargo in the refugee camp as well as two combat management units of the terrorist organizations in the area, it added.
The military also located and destroyed an explosive device in the city area and confiscated weapons and military equipment, according to the statement.
The Israeli operation is focused on weakening the Jenin Brigade, a unit made up of militant groups based in the refugee camp and founded about a year ago.
Heavy fighting in the narrow streets of the refugee camp on Monday left residents without water and electricity and few food supplies.
Some 3,000 people were evacuated on Monday night amid fears of an escalation in violence.
“The Palestinian Red Crescent crews transported urgent relief supplies to Jenin to help the displaced citizens from the camp. The aid included blankets, mattresses, hygiene kits and water boxes,” the organization said.
Israel’s National Security Advisor Tzachi Hanegbi told Channel 12 on Tuesday morning that the military operation was getting closer to achieving its objectives.
On Monday night, IDF spokesperson Daniel Hagari had said that the operation could last another one to two days.
The West Bank is currently experiencing its deadliest violence in two decades, with 151 Palestinians killed so far this year.
The region has witnessed the emergence of new Palestinian armed groups, leading to an increase in attacks against Israelis, as well as acts of aggression by settlers.
On the Israeli side, 25 people, mostly settlers, including five minors, have lost their lives in Palestinian attacks. EFE