Israel arrests Islamic Jihad's leader in West Bank


Daoud Shehab, an Islamic Jihad spokesman, called the comments by Netanyahu and Mordechai "a declaration of war".

"We're aware of your health conditions, but we will take you anyway", one of the raiding Israeli officers was quoted by the Palestinian family as saying.

Almost two weeks after the Israeli army blew up a tunnel that ran between the southern Gaza Strip and Israel, killing 12 Palestinian fighters from the Islamic Jihad and Hamas movements, Israel has continued to exchange threats with the groups, saying that it will "respond with force" to any retaliation from Gaza.

The IDF said it deployed Iron Dome missile defense batteries throughout central Israel on Monday amid the Gaza-based Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) terrorist group's threat that it will avenge Israel's recent destruction of a cross-border attack tunnel.

We are aware of ongoing efforts by the Palestine Islamic Jihad against Israel. "They are playing with fire with the residents of the Gaza Strip and at the expense of Palestinian reconciliation and the entire region", he said in Arabic, adding that the terror group's leader Ramadan Shalah and his deputy Ziad Nakhaleh would be "held accountable" for the consequences of their actions.

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Coordinator of Israeli Government Activities in the Occupied Territories Yoav Mordechai announced yesterday that Israel is expecting Islamic Jihad to retaliate.

"We advise Islamic Jihad's leadership in Damascus to exercise caution and keep things under control".

The terror group has vowed to retaliate for the 12 of its members killed in the tunnel blast, calling Israel's threats against its leaders a "declaration of war".

The Israel Defense Forces blew up the tunnel, which originated in the Gazan city of Khan Younis and crossed into Israeli territory, near Kibbutz Kissufim, on October 30.

Israel has said it is holding the bodies of five fighters retrieved from the tunnel, and implied it could use them as bargaining chips to retrieve the remains of two soldiers believed to be held by Hamas. Also on Sunday, Khaled al-Batash, a senior Islamic Jihad official in Gaza, said the organization will "have no other choice to punish Israel for killing its members", Ynet said. "These days, there are still those who toy with trying renewed attacks on Israel", Netanyahu said at the start of the weekly cabinet meeting.