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    Israel Launches Most Intense Military Operation in West Bank in Years; at Least 8 Palestinians Dead

    Israel Launches Most Intense Military Operation in West Bank in Years; at Least 8 Palestinians Dead

    JENIN, West Bank (AP) — on Monday launched its most intense operation in the occupied West Bank in nearly two decades, carrying out a series of drone strikes and sending hundreds of troops on an open-ended mission into a militant stronghold. At least eight Palestinians were killed and dozens wounded.

    The crackdown was reminiscent of Israeli military tactics during the second Palestinian uprising in the early 2000s and came at a time of growing domestic pressure for a tough response to recent attacks on Israeli settlers, including a shooting last month that killed four Israelis.

    The operation took place in the Jenin refugee — an area in the northern West Bank that has long been known as a bastion of militants. The fighting, which began shortly after midnight, continued past nightfall.

    Throughout the day, black smoke rose from the crowded streets of the camp, a densely populated neighborhood that is home to some 14,000 people, while exchanges of fire rang out and drones could be heard buzzing overhead. Military bulldozers plowed through narrow streets, damaging buildings as they cleared the way for Israeli forces.

    “There are bulldozers destroying the streets, snipers are inside and on roofs of houses, drones are hitting houses and Palestinians are killed in the streets,” said Jamal Huweil, a political activist in the camp, predicting the operation would fail.

    The military blocked traffic…

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