Three Palestinians detained by Israel amidst protests against PA crackdown
Israeli troops arrested three Palestinian men in the West Bank overnight Tuesday. The men reportedly belong to the Islamic Jihad and Tanzim factions.
Israeli military sources reported that gunfire fire was exchanged in a separate incident in the town of Nablus in the West Bank.
On Tuesday, a senior member of the Islamic Jihad stated that Israel was powerless to dismantle the organization, despite ongoing attempts to do so.
"Even if hundreds of us are arrested, Israel will not succeed in dismantling the organization" Abu Al Mauman, of the group’s military wing, the Al Quds Brigades said.
Referring to Monday's suicide bomb attack in the Israeli coastal town of Netanya which killed five, he said: "(The) Netanya bombing was response to assassination of Jihad commander Louie Sa'adi."
An earlier statement from the group read: "The attack came in response to the assassination of Jihad commander Louie Sa'adi and others and in response to the continued arrests and other Israeli crimes committed against the organization and the Palestinian people.”
Israeli troops have launched several raids of suspected Islamic Jihad members in direct response to the bombing, including the arrest of the father and brother of the suicide bomber responsible for carrying out the attack.
According to Abu Al Mauman, Islamic Jihad remains committed to the period of calm, reportedly until the end of 2005.
Also on Tuesday, Palestinian Authority police arrested a number of Islamic Jihad members in the Nablus area.
The move was criticized by many Palestinians, and gun battles ensued in the West Bank as members of Fatah’s Al Aqsa Martyrs Brigades said that the group would not allow police officers to arrest Islamic Jihad members.
Meanwhile, Israeli police arrested another 20 Palestinians that had repsotedly been staying illegally in the Galilee region of northern Israel. Arrangements are under way to transfer them to the West Bank.