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Counter-terror Operations in Samaria

Photo source: IDF website

On Saturday night, a special activity was carried out by the police SWAT forces and the IDF, with the intelligence backing of the Shin Bet, in the town of Deir al-luson near Tulkarm (a little north of the Nur a-Shams refugee camp, which became a central terrorist Center over the past year). The attack was directed against a terrorist squad that was involved in the terror attack in Samaria in early November, during which an Israeli vehicle was fired upon, in which Elhanan Klein (29), who returned from reserve duty in his uniform, was driving together with his wife. Klein, who won a special certificate of excellence from the then Judea and Samaria division commander Avi Balut, in May 2022, for the assassination of a terrorist who threw stones near the Beit El junction, was killed by the gunfire. In addition, the terrorists carried out an attack a month ago against a bus on Route 55 (also in Samaria), during which a soldier was seriously injured.

During the operation, the forces entered the Palestinian city in an disguised manner and laid siege to a building in which a terrorist squad was barricaded, using a “pressure cooker” procedure (which included firing from a drone, firing anti-tank missiles and assistment of a bulldozer) during a 13-hour battle. Five terrorists were eventually eliminated – all of them belonging to Hamas, including Alaa Shreikh, the commander of Hamas’ military wing in the Tulkarm district. Another terrorist turned himself in to IDF forces. A SWAT fighter was critically wounded near the end of the operation and was urgently taken to Beilinson Hospital in Petah Tikva, where he is currently being treated.

The arena of warfare in Judea and Samaria is fundamentally different from the other arenas, and this is especially evident currently, when discussions about cease-fire and various political agreements are taking place in the other fronts, in the north and the south. In Judea and Samaria, there is no official body that directs the terror with which to speak, and there is no expectation that the arena will fade in the near future, regardless of what is happening in the other arenas. So far, the security establishment has been doing a good and precise job of containing terrorism and stopping its spread, with precise actions such as that in Tulkarm; but it may be necessary to take a more decisive and aggressive step later on.

To respond – rxpuyhi@gmail.com

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