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Israel arrests over 500 suspects in West Bank



Israeli security forces have detained over 500 suspects in anti-terror operations in the West Bank since the escalation of the conflict with Hamas, the Israeli military said Thursday.

A total of 524 people are being held, including at least 330 active members of the Islamist organisation that launched a major assault on Israel from Gaza on Oct. 7.

More than 50 weapons were also confiscated, according to the Israel Defense Forces (IDF).

The security situation in the West Bank has been increasingly tense, since the bloody attack by hundreds of Palestinian fighters on Israeli border communities 12 days ago.

Support for Hamas remains strong among the Palestinian population of the landlocked territory adjoining Jordan.

There are no official numbers of members of Hamas.

However, a poll in September showed that in the event of a presidential election, Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh could expect half of the vote if the only other candidate was Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas.

Ummul Idris

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