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Israel soldiers destroy Palestinian coronavirus testing centre

COVID-19 tests are being carried out at the Central Laboratory of the Palestinian Ministry of Health in the city of Ramallah, West Bank on March 16, 2020. The total number of coronavirus cases in West Bank climbed to 39. [Issam Rimawi - Anadolu Agency]
COVID-19 tests are being carried out at the Central Laboratory of the Palestinian Ministry of Health in the city of Ramallah, West Bank on March 16, 2020. The total number of coronavirus cases in West Bank climbed to 39. [Issam Rimawi - Anadolu Agency]

Israeli soldiers demolished a Palestinian security checkpoint used to test for coronavirus in the occupied West Bank, according to Wafa news agency.

The checkpoint was set up by Palestinian security forces at the entrance to the occupied West Bank city of Jenin to prevent the spread of the virus.

A total of 468 new coronavirus cases and three deaths from the disease were recorded in the occupied Palestinian territories over the past 24 hours, confirmed the Ministry of Health today, leaving the active cases at 8,360 and total deaths at 65.

It added that 40 patients are currently in intensive care units, including three placed on respirators, with no reports of recoveries.

Israeli forces also injured a Palestinian man at the Jenin refugee camp, reported Wafa.

READ: Pro-Israel news outlets ran ‘deepfake’ op-eds in ‘new disinformation frontier’

Local sources said soldiers stormed Jenin and its refugee camp early this morning to arrest activists. Occupation forces shot at Palestinians in the area, according to the reports, injuring one person in the leg.

Two people were arrested before the soldiers left the city and the checkpoint was destroyed.

Despite the coronavirus outbreak, Israeli authorities continue to abuse the most vulnerable Palestinian communities in the occupied West Bank, as part of decades-long attempts to drive them out of the area, and to similarly mistreat Palestinians in East Jerusalem.

According to B’Tselem, last month saw a spike in Israeli demolitions, which left 151 Palestinians, including 84 minors, homeless – despite the danger of remaining without shelter during a pandemic.

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