The IDF has avoided entering the city of Jenin and its refugee camp according to the instructions of the political echelon to allow the PA to regain its security control over the area, the PA’s security forces have so far arrested about 15 operatives of the Islamic Jihad but are avoiding entering the Jenin refugee camp itself where about 150 armed terrorists are operating.
PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas refrained from continuing the wave of arrests for fear that the arrests would disrupt the planned reconciliation meeting with the Palestinian factions in Cairo on the 30th of the month, a meeting he initiated in an attempt to regain the international legitimacy he had lost.
Senior PA officials claim that after the meeting in Cairo, the PA will resume anti-terrorist activity in the Jenin area, but this still requires proof on the ground, Israel made it clear to the PA that resuming terrorist activity from the Jenin area will result in the immediate entry of the IDF into the area.
In the meantime, the IDF forces and the Shin Bet are working against the terrorist nests in three main centers: the Nur Shams refugee camp in the Tulkarm area, the Askar refugee camp near Nablus, and the Aqabat Jaber refugee camp in the Jericho area.
This week, IDF forces entered in large forces, as part of an extensive military operation, at the same time as these three refugee camps where large terrorist infrastructures of the Islamic Jihad and Hamas were established.
The IDF’s operation did not result in a large number of arrests because the terrorists recognized in advance the movement of dozens of IDF vehicles and hundreds of soldiers and fled or hid in pre-prepared hiding places within the dense population.
The terrorists entrench themselves in these refugee camps, plant large explosive devices under the roads and roads and set ambushes for the IDF forces.
The most prominent example of this is the Nur Shams refugee camp which adopted the operating methods of the Jenin refugee camp, when the IDF forces entered the camp a large explosive device was used against the IDF forces which miraculously did not result in casualties.
The IDF entered the Nur Shams refugee camp with dozens of vehicles and bulldozers that plowed the roads in the camp in order to detonate explosive devices buried underground, according to the residents of the camp, great damage was caused to the water and electricity infrastructure in the camp, which is estimated at tens of millions of shekels.
What characterizes these three refugee camps is the density of the population on a very small area, which allows terrorists to hide within the built-up area and use the residents as human shields.
The Nur Shams refugee camp covers an area of 210 square meters and 13,500 residents live there, the Askar refugee camp has 23,700 residents on an area of 119,000 square meters, while the Aqabat Jaber refugee camp has 10,000 residents on an area of 1.7 square kilometers.
The IDF will have to change the methods of action against the terrorist nests in the refugee camps, the emphasis should be on accurate intelligence, surprise and closing the exits from the refugee camps in a way that will make it difficult for the terrorists to escape.
The IDF operates in these camps with large forces in order to minimize the harm to the soldiers, as it did in the operation in the Jenin refugee camp, but it must perfect its methods of operation. The IDF should act according to priorities, senior security officials recommend starting at the Nur Shams refugee camp located on the main axis from the city of Nablus to the city of Tulkarm, from where young people come out to throw stones at Israeli vehicles traveling on the axis as well as terrorist squads that carry out shooting attacks in the Tulkarm area.
According to them, we should now focus on this camp, impose a sudden curfew on it, enter with large forces and deal thoroughly with the destruction of the terrorist infrastructure and the elimination of the sabotage laboratories where the large explosive devices are manufactured.
It is worth paying attention to the fact that the terrorist organizations are greatly encouraged by the internal disputes in Israeli society on the issue of judicial reform, they are convinced that the IDF is on the way to disintegration and that this is the time to increase terrorism in Judea and Samaria against the IDF and the settlers, therefore it is of great importance that the IDF take the initiative and act quickly and by surprise against the nests of terrorism in the refugee camps in Judea and Samaria.