High-level meeting held between PA leaders, Israel security officials to 'calm' West Bank tensions
A high-level meeting between senior Palestinian leaders and Israeli security officials recently took place to calm tensions in the occupied West Bank, according to Israeli media reports on Tuesday.
Palestinian Authority (PA) civil affairs chief Hussein Al-Sheikh, who is also responsible for security coordination with Israel, and intelligence director Majed Faraj met with officials from the Israeli army and the Shin Bet intelligence agency.
At the meeting, the Israeli officials called for the PA to mobilise its forces in Jenin and Nablus provinces, arguing this would prevent a security collapse, Israel's state-owned Kan 11 broadcaster reported.
It follows an increase in violent Israeli raids around the two cities and clashes with Palestinian gunmen.
The Israeli broadcaster said no progress was achieved on this issue during the meeting, "but dialogue and coordination between the two parties continues".
Al-Sheikh reportedly told the Israeli officials the PA forces are present on the ground but are "not able to effectively work after all the night raids carried out by the occupation forces and the arrests and killings of residents".
"Your operations weaken us," he was quoted as saying.
While Al-Sheikh made similar comments to Israeli news website Walla last week, Israeli representatives told him during their meeting that the current security situation in the occupied West Bank is "not acceptable".
It comes after US Assistant Secretary of State Barbara Leaf pressured the PA to restore control over Jenin and Nablus provinces during her visit to Palestine and Israel two weeks ago, during which she met Al-Sheikh and Faraj.
Renowned Palestinian journalist Shireen Abu Akleh was shot dead by Israeli forces while covering a military raid at the Jenin refugee camp in May.
Today is a sad day.— The New Arab (@The_NewArab) May 11, 2022
This morning, one of Palestine's best-known journalists, #ShireenAbuAkleh, was shot dead by Israeli troops in Jenin. She had been there to report on an Israeli raid, and was wearing a press flak jacket and helmet.
Rest in power.
Israel has repeatedly raided the occupied West Bank as part of "Operation Break the Wave" since March.
The city and province of Jenin have been key targets of Israeli military raids, which it claims target Palestinian fighters belonging to Hamas and Islamic Jihad.
This year has been deadly for the West Bank, with Israeli occupation forces having killed over 100 Palestinians there. Around 31 of these deaths occurred in the Jenin area.