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IDF extends West Bank closure as unrest grows following prisoner jailbreak

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The Israel Defense Forces said it was extending its closure for the West Bank on Wednesday night, amid fears of an outbreak of violence in the area following the escape of six Palestinian security prisoners earlier this week.

Since Monday’s jailbreak, Israeli security forces have been conducting a massive manhunt to capture the six fugitives, who are considered highly dangerous, after they broke out of the high-security Gilboa Prison in what is considered to be one of the most serious escapes in the country’s history.

In the days following the escape, security prisoners in several Israeli facilities have held riots and Palestinians have held at times violent demonstrations in support of the fugitives, with riots breaking out in multiple sites in the West Bank and in Jerusalem.

Wednesday saw major unrest at Ketziot Prison, where inmates burned several cells, as well as several other facilities.

And Wednesday evening saw rioting break out in several locations in the West Bank.

Israeli defense officials also fear that Palestinian terror groups in the Gaza Strip, specifically Islamic Jihad, may renew rocket fire from the enclave in solidarity.


© The Times of Israel

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