Khaled Meshaal, the head of Hamas’ political bureau abroad, stated that the ruling Israeli coalition administration led by prime minister Yair Lapid is seeking to emerge victorious in the forthcoming legislative elections, scheduled for November 1, by means of shedding the blood of ordinary Palestinians.
“The martyrs of the resistance front have paved the way for the liberation of occupied [Palestinian] lands, and the re-emergence of resistance in the West Bank. Despite the persecution of Palestinians, targeted killings of resistance fighters, cruel siege imposed on the city of Jenin and elsewhere in the West Bank, and mass arrests, the resistance continues to flourish,” Meshaal pointed out.
He added, “The barbaric crimes of the Zionist regime will never undermine the determination of Palestinian resistance fighters. On the contrary, it shows that the spirit of resistance runs high among all Palestinians.”
The senior Hamas official also called on all Palestinians to preserve national unity and tighten the noose around Israeli settlers.
Meshaal went on to stress the need for turning Jenin, Nablus and other West Bank towns and villages into a strong fortress of resistance against Israel.
“Al-Quds serves as a source of inspiration in order to transform the path of popular uprising (intidafa) and resistance, and secure the complete liberation of occupied lands as well as return of Palestinian refugees to their ancestral homes,” he stated.
Early on Tuesday morning, large numbers of Israeli forces stormed the city of Nablus, located approximately 49 kilometers (30 miles) north of al-Quds.
According to the Palestinian Health Ministry, five Palestinians were killed by Israeli fire.
Palestinian health and security officials said one of those killed was unarmed. They identified the victims as 26-year-old Ali Khaled Antar, Mishal Baghdadi, 27; Wadee al-Hawah, 31; Hamdi Qayyem, 30; and 35-year-old Hamdi Mohamed Sharaf.
The Palestinian Health Ministry later reported that another Palestinian youth, Qusay al-Tamimi, was killed during confrontations with Israeli forces in the village of Nabi Saleh near the city of Ramallah.
Meanwhile, Gaza-based Palestinian resistance groups have convened an emergency meeting, and called for national mourning, major strikes and protest rallies across the occupied Palestinian territories in the aftermath of assassination of five Palestinian men killed by Israeli forces during a raid in Nablus.
“We are telling our brethren in Nablus that we will continue to stand on their side. We will hopefully fight within your ranks in the near future. The resistance campaign, which has broken out in the West Bank and across the occupied Palestinian lands, carries this message that the Zionist regime is in decline,” Suhail al-Hindi, a member of the Hamas political bureau, said.
“Attempts by the Israeli occupation forces to suffocate the resistance front in Nablus are doomed to failure. We want all residents of the Gaza Strip to stage demonstrations in solidarity with our compatriots in Nablus, and urge young Gazans to respond to the latest Israeli crime properly,” Khaled al-Batsh, another top Hamas official, said.
Israeli forces have also recently been conducting overnight raids and killings in the northern occupied West Bank, mainly in the cities of Jenin and Nablus, where new groups of Palestinian resistance fighters have been formed.
At least 180 Palestinians have been killed by Israeli forces in the illegally occupied West Bank and besieged Gaza Strip since the beginning of the year, including 51 Palestinians during Israel’s three-day assault on Gaza in August, according to the Palestinian health ministry.
Local and international rights groups have condemned Israel’s excessive use of force and “shoot-to-kill policy” against Palestinians.