Jenin in the crosshairs: Israeli forces kill 27 Palestinians in 2022 so far
Israeli forces have killed 27 Palestinians in the Jenin region in the first seven months of 2022, Jenin-based journalists revealed on Wednesday, highlighting to brutal effects of a sustained Israeli military operation on the occupied city.
Among the Palestinians gunned down, are eight teenagers - including two school children, one a girl - and Palestinian American journalist Shireen Abu Akleh.
Two more were also included in the count, both from Jenin, but were killed within Israel.
B'Tselem: US-Backed Israeli Whitewash— B'Tselem בצלם بتسيلم (@btselem) July 4, 2022
All investigations published so far conclude that Israel is responsible for the killing of journalist Shireen Abu Akleh. It is not clear on what grounds does the US State Department seek to dismiss her killing as > pic.twitter.com/6DSChFVSRS
The latest victim in Jenin is 20-year-old Rafiq Ghannam, killed early on Wednesday during an Israeli raid on the town of Jabaa, southwest of Jenin city. Ghannam's body remains withheld by Israeli forces.
"Rafiq was a first-year student of social service at Al-Quds Open University in Jenin," his uncle told The New Arab. "He was very energetic and hard-working, saving to build a house and start a family and planning for his future."
"Rafiq was at his parents' house when Israeli forces raided Jabaa," said the victim's uncle. "Israeli forces reached the neighbourhood when Rafiq stepped out of the house to see what was going on. He walked about 50 meters down the street, in which the Israeli soldiers opened fire at him."
BREAKING: 20-year-old Palestinian youth Rafiq Ghannam succumbed to his injuries that he sustained by Israeli occupation gunfire before arresting him at dawn today in Jaba' town, south of Jenin. pic.twitter.com/6GrGqdi6wp— PALESTINE ONLINE 🇵🇸 (@OnlinePalEng) July 6, 2022
"He didn't die immediately. He bled for about half an hour on the ground," his uncle continued. "When the soldiers left with his body, we found a pool of blood right where he bled."
Earlier on Sunday, Israeli forces killed an 18-year-old high school student at the entrance of Jabaa as young residents attempted to confront the armed Israeli forces with stones. Last week, 23-year-old Mohammad Marei was killed also during a standoff with Israeli forces raiding Jenin city.
Jenin has been at the centre of Israeli raids since September when six Palestinians escaped the high-security Israeli prison of Gilboa. Two of them were recaptured in the Jenin refugee camp.
Israeli raids in Jenin increased in December after an Israeli settler was killed in a shooting attack between Jenin and Nablus. Israel accused two brothers from the town of Silat Al-Harithiyah, northwest of Jenin city.
18-year-old Palestinian teenager Kamel Alawneh, who was killed by Israeli forces in Jenin, was a high school student about to finish his exams and wanted to be a journalist. pic.twitter.com/3sXIQUkXP6— Rona Gaza✌ (@Ronaps2) July 5, 2022
Subsequently, Israeli forces repeatedly raided Silat al-Harithiyah and detonated the houses of Ghaith and Omar Jaradat, whom it accused of being behind the shooting.
Israeli raids then focused on the Jenin refugee camp at the beginning of April, after two shooting attacks carried out by Palestinians from Jenin that killed seven Israelis.
One of the Palestinian attackers was 22-year-old Diaa Hamarsheh from the town of Yaabad. The other was 29-year-old Raad Khazem from the Jenin refugee camp.
In the following months, Israeli forces conducted undercover incursions into the Jenin camp, assassinating Palestinian militants, and launched raids often clashing with Palestinian gunmen. Civilians were often killed by Israeli stray fire during these raids.
Israeli occupation forces and settlers have killed 76 Palestinians, 25 of them from Jenin, since the beginning of this year. pic.twitter.com/ZBrAsXtSUi— 𓂆 Raseel.ps (@PsRaseel) July 3, 2022
In April, 17-year-old Mohammed Zakarneh was killed by a stray bullet in Jenin's industrial zone. Zakarneh was a worker who was on his way back home for Ramadan Iftar at the moment when Israeli forces were trying to ambush a Palestinian militant.
ِA week later, 18-year-old Hanan Khudour, a high school student, succumbed to wounds caused by an Israeli stray bullet nine days prior. Khudour was exiting class at the same time the Israeli army raided Jenin city.
A month later, on May 11, Israeli forces shot at journalists covering an Israeli raid in the Jenin refugee camp from a street outside the camp. Palestinian-American Aljazeera reported Shireen Abu Akleh was killed by an Israeli bullet. Eyewitnesses said there were no clashes at the site and that the only gunfire came from Israeli forces.
The 27 Palestinians killed in Jenin are part of the 78 Palestinians killed by Israeli forces in the occupied West Bank since the beginning of the year.