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IDF uncovers bomb factory in Jenin

Troops also located weapons and explosives stored underground inside a mosque in the city.

Israeli soldiers in Jenin as part of a counter-terrorism operation, July 3, 2023. Credit: Israel Defense Forces.
Israeli soldiers in Jenin as part of a counter-terrorism operation, July 3, 2023. Credit: Israel Defense Forces.

Israeli forces located an explosives workshop in the Jenin refugee camp on Monday containing hundreds of IEDs (Improvised Explosive Devices) as well as mines intended for use against armored vehicles.

The fighters also confiscated radios and military equipment and an instruction manual on how to prepare IEDs.

A second workshop was also located containing means for preparing explosives. The forces confiscated all weapons.

Separately, troops located weapons and explosives stored underground inside a mosque in the city.

After a lengthy gun battle with Palestinian terrorists who had barricaded themselves in the place of worship, Israeli forces managed to enter and locate the weapons.

The Israel Defense Forces began a major counterterror operation in Jenin in the early hours of Monday, including the entry into the Samaria city of significant ground forces.

“IDF forces are currently encircling the refugee camp from all directions as part of a ‘brigade-level’ operation,” said IDF Spokesperson R. Adm. Daniel Hagari.

“We have no intention of occupying the refugee camp, and this is not an operation against the Palestinian Authority. We will create a sequence of operations in the northern part of the West Bank,” he added.

An Israeli soldier from the elite Duvdevan undercover unit was lightly wounded during the operation by grenade shrapnel, the IDF said. He was evacuated to a hospital for treatment and subsequently returned to the field.

According to the IDF, seven Palestinians had been killed as of Monday morning. The Palestinian Authority Health Ministry raised its death toll to eight as of the early afternoon.

The IDF arrested more than 20 people during the operation.

“In the face of terrorism, we will take a proactive and decisive approach. Anyone who harms the citizens of Israel will pay a heavy price,” said Defense Minister Yoav Gallant in a statement earlier in the day.

“We are closely watching the actions of our enemies, and Israel’s defense establishment is prepared for every scenario,” he added.

Jenin has been the source of more than 50 shootings since the start of the year, and 59 terrorists from the city have carried out terror attacks since the beginning of 2022, killing three civilians and wounding 14 other civilians, the army said.

On June 19, an unusually large IED wounded seven soldiers on their way out of Jenin following an arrest operation, requiring the IDF to call in gunship support to extract them. On June 22, the IDF also carried out a targeted killing of three terrorists in Samaria via a drone strike, a tactic not seen in Judea and Samaria in 20 years. That incident was followed on June 26 by the first-ever launch of a homemade rocket from Jenin.

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