The Palestinian leadership has been communicating frantically with several parties to convene an urgent meeting of the UN Security Council and put an end to the “ongoing Israeli oppressive aggression” and protect the Palestinian people. The Palestinian Authority (PA) also announced that it will refer to various international organisations and authorities in this regard.
In a statement published on Sunday by the official Palestinian news agency “Wafa“, the PA condemned what it described as “the collective punishment” imposed by Israeli occupation forces in all Palestinian territories with its “brutal aggression”.
The PA noted that “the Israeli aggression has been taking place for several days under the pretext of searching for three missing settlers”. At least six Palestinians have been killed by the Israelis during the “search” campaign. “Homes have been violated, hundreds have been arrested and many institutions and organisations, including universities, have been stormed,” said the PA statement. “The Israeli government is pushing the situation towards more crisis and an explosion.”
Stressing that the “aggression will not achieve its objectives”, the PA insisted that it will instead only lead to the people of Palestine holding ever more firmly to their rights. “This Israeli arrogance will not prevent the determination of our people to achieve our legitimate national goals, including freedom and independence. In addition, it will not impair the strength and rooting of our unity goals, in the face of this onslaught that aims at the destruction of our national project.”
The Israeli army is carrying out a widespread operation in the occupied West Bank under the pretext of searching for three Israeli settlers who went missing on Thursday June 12 from the settlement of Gush Etzion, north of Hebron. Even though the illegal settlement is in an area controlled by Israel, it holds the Palestinian Authority responsible for the settlers’ safety. Around 400 Palestinians have been arrested, many of them senior officials of Hamas in the West Bank.
No Palestinian entity has claimed responsibility for the kidnapping of the settlers, although Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has accused Hamas of carrying out the operation. Hamas rejects the Israeli allegations.