Israeli forces rounded up nine Palestinians in overnight raids carried out across the occupied West Bank, according to the Israeli military on Wednesday.
The individuals were arrested for “suspected involvement in popular terrorist activities”, the army said in a statement without elaborating on the nature of said activities. The detainees have since been remanded into custody for further investigation, the statement added.
The Israeli army frequently carries out sweeping arrest campaigns across the occupied West Bank on the pretext of searching for “wanted” Palestinians.
According to Palestinian figures, approximately 6,500 Palestinians are currently languishing in Israeli prisons, including scores of women and some 350 minors.
At least 769 Palestinians have been denied exit from the blockaded Gaza Strip by Israeli authorities since January, Israeli newspaper Haaretz reported on Wednesday.
The applicants included Palestinians who sought medical treatment for diseases such as cancer. According to Haaretz, Israeli authorities cited first-degree relations between the applicants and Hamas members for denying them exit from the seaside enclave. Last year, Israel denied exit to only 21 Gazans.
Since 2007, the Gaza Strip has groaned under a crippling Israeli blockade that continues to deprive its inhabitants of many essential commodities, including food, fuel and medicine and building materials.
Israeli intelligence service has been exploiting exit permits to blackmail Palestinians for security information, while many others are being detained at Israeli access points despite holding permits.—TNS