WEST BANK (Dispatches) – The occupying regime’s police on Monday launched an operation of mass arrests of Palestinians, following two weeks of protests against Zionist settlement policies in the occupied East al-Quds and the bombardment of the Gaza Strip.
The police planned to arrest 500 Palestinians inside the occupied territories, authorities announced on Sunday, in a plan approved by the regime’s so-called minister of internal security Amir Ohana and the commissioner of the regime’s police Kobi Shabtai.
The 48-hour arrest campaign began on Monday morning.
The occupying regime’s police concluded that their ‘power of deterrence’ had been severely damaged among the Palestinian community inside the occupied territories, after confrontations in mixed cities including Lod, Acre and Haifa, and are attempting to regain it with this campaign.
The regime has mobilized thousands of police officers from all districts and units to carry out the arrests.
Authorities have reportedly prepared a “bank of targets” of 500 names under the pretext of vandalism, violence and incitement.
Two Palestinians have been killed in the past two weeks - Mousa Hassouna, in Lod, known as Lydd by Palestinians, during a confrontation with radical Zionist group backed by settlers from the occupied West Bank; and Mohammad Kiwan, who was shot by police near Umm al-Fahm, in the northern part of the occupied territories.
Meanwhile, several Zionist groups and settler groups have renewed calls for the demolition of Islam’s third holiest site, the Al-Aqsa Mosque.
Local media reported that proponents of the call took to social media and posted: “What is needed is not to demolish towers in Gaza, but rather demolish Al-Aqsa [Mosque] in Jerusalem (al-Quds).”
The shameless call comes amid recently renewed incursions by settlers into the Al-Aqsa compound.
Earlier this month, during the final days of Ramadan, the occupying regime’s troops stormed the mosque and attacked worshippers injuring hundreds as they prayed. Occupation troops used stun grenades, tear gas, and rubber-coated steel bullets to disperse worshippers and shot directly into the mosque buildings.