Palestinian Authority forces 'preparing to arrest Jenin Brigade members'

Palestinian Authority forces 'preparing to arrest Jenin Brigade members'
3 min read
West Bank
20 September, 2023
As tensions rise in Jenin, the PA has planned a wave of arrests of Palestinians accused by Israel of militant activity against its forces.
Palestinian armed resistance in the northern West Bank increased since 2021, centered around Jenin [Qassam Muaddi /TNA]

Palestinian Authority (PA) security forces have prepared a list of 30 Jenin Brigade members to be arrested, a source close to the local armed groups told The New Arab's Arabic-language sister site, Al-Araby Al-Jadeed, has reported.

On Sunday, PA security forces in a civilian car arrested and detained 28-year-old Mostafa Abul Rob in a street in Jenin. Abul Rob is accused by Israel of armed activity against its forces.

Late on Sunday, Palestinian fighters from various factions at the Jenin refugee camp held a public press conference, where they called on "honest and patriotic members of the Palestinian security to expose those in the security apparatus involved in arresting resistance fighters".

The fighters also accused the PA of "attempting to suppress the resistance", with more arrests expected.

In July, tensions rose between the PA and Palestinian fighters in Jenin. The Brigade accused the PA security forces of reneging on an agreement by not releasing detained Brigade members.

The brigade said that maintaining calm, it had kept its part of a deal following a visit to Jenin by PA President Mahmoud Abbas after a large-scale Israeli raid devastated the city.

The then-governor of Jenin, Akram Rujoub, denied the existence of such an agreement, saying: "President Abbas needed permission from nobody to visit Jenin."

He said the detained men had "pending criminal cases in Palestinian courts" with the same claim made by Palestinian security forces spokesman Major-General Talal Dweikat.

On Sunday, Israeli media sources reported that the PA had received new policing equipment, including surveillance tech, from the US with Israeli approval.

The US conditions for the delivery of this equipment included the PA's regaining control over the West Bank, the report claimed.

Since 2021, Palestinian armed groups increased their presence in the northern West Bank, particularly around Jenin.

The Jenin Brigade was formed in late 2021, gathering Palestinian fighters from various factions, although the outfit is thought to be closely linked to the Al-Quds Battalions, the armed wing of the Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ).

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In recent months, Israeli forces have faced resistance from Palestinian groups during their raids into Jenin.

In late June, seven Israeli soldiers were wounded and several armoured vehicles damaged after armed confrontations with Palestinian fighters in Jenin.

Later in early July, Israeli forces were involved in a two-day raid of Jenin destroying most of the refugee camp's infrastructure and killing 10 Palestinians.