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Israeli forces raid family home of longest-serving Palestinian prisoner in West Bank

In this file picture, an Israeli army soldier shoots tear gas canisters during the funeral of 12-year-old Palestinian boy Mohammad al-Alami, who was killed by Israeli troops, according to the Palestinian health ministry, near al-Khalil in the Israeli-occupied West Bank. (Photo by Reuters)

Israeli forces have continued their large-scale overnight raids into several areas across the West Bank, storming the family home of Nael al-Barghouti, the longest-serving Palestinian prisoner, in the central part of the occupied territory.

Israeli troops broke into the Barghouti family’s residence in the village of Kobar, located 10 kilometers (6.2 miles) north of Ramallah, early on Monday, violently ransacked it and damaged their personal belongings.

According to local media reports, local sources, speaking on condition of anonymity, said the forces also seized the car owned by Barghouti’s wife.

Barghouti, 66, has been in prison for more than four decades. He had previously been released under a prisoner swap deal between the Palestinian resistance group Hamas and Israel. However, he was re-arrested in 2014 and his sentence was reinstated.

His lawyer filed a petition with the so-called Israeli High Court, demanding Barghouti’s release based on the terms of the prisoner swap deal which states that Israel cannot re-arrest freed prisoners and reinstate their sentences.

At least 47 Palestinians who were freed under the terms of the 2011 prisoner swap deal have been re-arrested and had their life imprisonment reinstated, Palestinian sources said.

Elsewhere in the West Bank, Israeli forces stormed the city of Bethlehem and Dheisheh refugee camp, triggering bitter confrontations with locals.

The official Palestinian news agency WAFA, citing local and security sources, said Israeli soldiers stormed the camp on Monday morning, prompting residents to engage in clashes with them.

The forces then fired tear gas canisters and stun grenades to disperse the protesting crowd. However, there were no reports of injuries.

Israeli troops also raided the house of Palestinian prisoner Saleh al-Harimi in central Bethlehem, violently ransacked it and damaged stuff there.

Israeli forces reportedly fired tear gas canisters towards an ambulance in the area.

Additionally, they brutally assaulted and beat up a Palestinian man near the city of Beit Jala.

Israel has ramped up its aggression in the West Bank since its genocidal war on Gaza began in early October.

At least 344 Palestinians have been killed by Israeli forces in the occupied West Bank since October 7, when Israel waged the war on Gaza after Hamas carried out a historic operation against the occupying entity in retaliation for its intensified atrocities against the Palestinian people.

The Israeli aggression has so far killed at least 24,100 Palestinians, mostly women and children, and injured 60,834 others in Gaza. The Tel Aviv regime has imposed a “complete siege” on the territory, cutting off fuel, electricity, food, and water to the more than two million Palestinians living there.

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