Israel kills two Islamic Jihad activists after movement declares readiness to stop rocket attacks
Israeli forces operating in the West Bank on Sunday killed two Islamic Jihad activists. Occupation troops surrounded a house in the town of Qabatiyeh after sundown Sunday and exchanged fire with two men inside, Palestinian witnesses said.
Earlier in the day, the Islamic Jihad declared that it had decided to stop launching rockets at Israel in exchange for an Israeli halt of air raids and assassination attacks. Khaled Al Batsh, political leader of the movement in Gaza Strip, reiterated his movement's commitment to the calm declared by Palestinian groups earlier this year.
"We will commit not to launch rockets if Israel didn't renew its air raids," Batsh conveyed, according to RNA.
He also held Israel responsible for the military escalation and the assassinations of a number of Islamic Jihad operatives in the West Bank and Gaza Strip, stressing the rocket attacks were in retaliation to the Israeli crimes, according to him.
Al Batsh's comments came hours after Israel's Defense Minister Shaul Mofaz vowed to wage war against the Islamic Jihad. The Israeli offensive against the Islamic Jihad's armed wing has intensified since last Wednesday's suicide bombing, which killed five Israelis.
"We are carrying out a broad operation against terrorism, a broad operation against the Islamic Jihad infrastructure in light of Islamic Jihad's intention to continue with suicide bombings," Mofaz said ahead of the government's weekly Cabinet meeting, Haaretz reported.
On the ground, Israeli occupation forces wounded on Sunday eight Palestinians in the West Bank city of Hebron, WAFA reported. Sources said that Israeli soldiers backed by tanks and armoured vehicles swept into Dora town, south of Hebron city, and launched a house-to-house search campaign. Eyewitnesses stated that Israeli soldiers randomly opened fire toward some houses, wounding eight people, some seriously.