IDF raids Hamas cell in Judea and Samaria, kills 5 terrorists, 2 soldiers injured

The incident was part of five different operations that took place overnight in Judea and Samaria, aimed at arresting Palestinians with ties to terrorist organizations and seizing weapons. 

By Tobias Siegal, World Israel News

Two IDF soldiers were seriously injured early Sunday during four separate clashes with armed terrorists linked to Hamas and the Islamic Jihad in Judea and Samaria. At least five terrorists were killed.

According to the IDF, troops were on a mission at the village of Burqin, located 3 miles west of Jenin, to arrest terrorists with ties to Hamas who were planning an attack on Israelis.

Upon entering the village, the troops were met with heavy fire from the house of the suspect they had come to arrest. The soldiers retaliated and reportedly killed one terrorist linked to a Hamas cell.

Both injured soldiers, part of the IDF’s Duvdevan Special Unit that specializes in counter-terrorism operations in urban areas, were evacuated by helicopter to the Rambam Hospital in northern Israel, where they remain in stable condition as of Sunday afternoon.

The soldiers’ families have been notified and “the circumstances surrounding the incident will be investigated,” an IDF statement read, noting that the military was looking into the possibility of the injuries being the result of friendly fire.

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According to IDF Spokesperson Brig.-Gen. Ran Kochav, the incident near Jenin was part of five different operations that took place overnight, aimed at arresting Palestinians with ties to terrorist organizations and seizing weapons and other materials used for Hamas’ infrastructure in Judea and Samaria.

The four other operations ended with four dead terrorists who clashed with IDF forces, a few arrests and no casualties to Israeli soldiers, Israeli media reported.

Addressing the possibility of retaliatory attacks from the Gaza Strip, Kochav said it was a possibility.

“This was a Hamas cell, one that we have been following for a long time with intelligence from the Shin Bet. There’s always a chance that there can be rockets, especially since this was a Hamas cell and the group is always trying to connect Gaza to the West Bank,” he explained.

The Islamic Jihad issued a statement Sunday morning praising the terrorists who were killed overnight and warning Israel of continued terrorist activity in Judea and Samaria.

“Our fighters dealt bravely with the incident in Jenin, took part in confronting the occupation forces and caused significant damage to the enemy,” a statement issued by the Islamic Jihad and cited by Israeli media read.

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“Israel should expect dark days in [Judea and Samaria],” the statement added.

Four of the terrorists killed overnight in Judea and Samaria:

Prime Minister Naftali Bennett, while en route to New York to attend the UN General Assembly, received a detailed update on the overnight events in Judea and Samaria.

“The security forces took action overnight in Judea and Samaria against Hamas terrorists who were about to carry out terrorist attacks in real-time.

“The soldiers and commanders in the field acted as expected; they engaged the enemy and we back them completely,” a statement issued by the Prime Minister’s Office read.