11 April 2002

IDF Spokesman Communiques

1. IDF Activity in Judea and Samaria during the last 24 Hours

As the end of the IDF coordinated action against the Palestinian terrorist infrastructure draws nearer and following the successful completion of their mission, IDF troops withdrew from the following 24 Palestinian villages in Judea, Samaria and the Jordan Valley over the past 24 hours:

Jenin region: Kabatia

Nablus region: Salfit

Ramallah region: Beit Rima, Kafr Arura, Jaljulia, Aqwin, Dir Abu Sudan, Mizra A-Nubni, Amuria, Karwat Bani Zayid, Kafr Ein and Dir Asna.

Hebron region: Yata, Samu’a

Jordan Valley region: Tamun, Tubas and Taysir

Tulkarem region: Kafr Ruman, Rameem, Anata, Bazaria, Bila’ah and Atil.

IDF operations are still underway in the cities of Jenin, Nablus, Ramallah and Bethlehem.

Since the early morning hours, IDF troops have begun to operate in the Dahariya sector, southwest of Otniel, and in the Bir Zeit sector, north of Beit El. These troops are searching the area for wanted terrorist operatives, arms and other components of the terrorist infrastructure.

In addition, yesterday IDF troops entered the Ein Beit Ilma refugee camp, northwest of Nablus. In the course of this operation, close to 400 Palestinians surrendered to IDF troops and were subsequently arrested. Some of those arrested were armed and their weapons were confiscated.

Furthermore, though a number of explosives were set off, there were no IDF casualties.

Presently, the search for suspected terrorists and their weapons continues.

Yesterday, IDF troops arrested 4 Palestinian policemen near the Casbah of Nablus. Found in their possession was a considerable amount of weaponry, including 21 Kalashnikov assault rifles, military utility vests filled with arms, boxes of detonators for the preparing of explosives, time-delayed fuses and sub-calibers for LAW missiles.

Two IDF soldiers were lightly injured yesterday in an exchange of gunfire as Israeli forces operated in the city of Nablus.

The IDF Spokesperson declared that IDF forces will continue in their efforts to root out Palestinian terror, in order to provide security for Israel’s civilians and soldiers.

2. Terrorists Surrender to IDF Forces in the Jenin Refugee Camp

In the early morning hours of today, 36 Palestinian terrorists surrendered themselves to IDF forces operating in the Jenin refugee camp.

The terrorists exited from their compound in the camp, an installation that apparently included many underground tunnels, and were taken for questioning by Israeli security forces.

Among the terrorists apprehended were the heads of the Islamic Jihad terrorist infrastructure in Samaria.

IDF forces are currently working to locate additional terrorists and neutralize booby traps left in the buildings, in order to eradicate the terrorist infrastructure in the camp.

3. Arms and Other Weaponry Found in the Home of Razi Jabali

In an IDF raid on a house in the Mission neighborhood of Ramallah, a loaded Galil assault rifle and pistol were discovered, as well as ammunition, night vision equipment and other weaponry.

In a later investigation, it was found that the house belonged to Razi Jabali, a commander in the Palestinian police force in Judea and Samaria. Two armed Palestinians found in the vicinity of the house were arrested. The weaponry was confiscated by IDF soldiers.

4. Humanitarian Assistance to the Palestinian Population

There are countless examples of coordination arrangments between Israeli and Palestinian authorities for the passage of ambulances and other vehicles transporting the ill and delivering supplies to hospitals that have taken place in Judea and Samaria. These include the following:

In the areas of Bethlehem, Hebron and Ramallah, the passage of patients suffering from kidney disease needing hospital dialysis treatment.

In the Nablus region, 25 kidney patients are permitted to travel to the "Al-Watani" hospital to receive their dialysis treatment.

In the Tulkarem region, some 15 kidney patients were evacuated for dialysis treatment in hospitals both in Judea and Samaria, as well as in Israel.

Yesterday, in the Jenin area, a truck with oxygen canisters was allowed to make a delivery in a Nablus hospital. There is no basis to the Palestinian claim that the truck was not allowed to make this delivery due to gunfire on its route. In addition, contrary to Palestinian claims, there is not any shortage of oxygen in Nablus hospitals.

Furthermore, the regular delivery of food, medicine, vaccines and medical equipment is being facilitated to the Palestinian Authority, including the delivery of oxygen to Palestinian hospitals.

In the Gaza Strip, there is ongoing coordination for the passage of ambulance in and out of the area. In the past few days, there were deliveries of oxygen, medical equipment and children’s medicines.

IDF Accidentally Injures an Armenian Church Employee in Bethlehem

Today, during the delivery of medicine to priests in the Armenian Church in Bethlehem, a figure was spotted in the window near the meeting point. The figure in question was not dressed in clerical garb and appeared armed. An IDF soldier positioned nearby, sensing a danger to both the priests and IDF forces, fired one shot at the suspicious figure. An investigation later revealed that one of the Armenian Church employees was shot.

The IDF administered medical care on-site to the individual and then immediately evacuated him to a hospital in Israel.

The IDF Spokesperson deeply regrets the harm caused to the church employee and to any innocent civilians.