IDF: Elite unit nabs Hamas commander
Palestinian witnesses said the daytime arrest raid was executed quickly, and no shots were fired during the course of the operation. According to the witnesses, the border policeman arrived in a civilian vehicle to a building in refugee camp just after noon.
The troops surrounded the home and swiftly arrested el-Haj and a second man, before placing the militants in their vehicle and driving away. Additional jeeps arrived to secure the extrication from the refugee camp, and the forces left the area before locals became aware that a raid had taken place.
A handgun was found in the building where the two men were located, the army. Both men were handed over to the Shin Bet (Israeli Security Services) for questioning.
El-Haj, Hamas chief in the northern West Bank, quickly took the helm of the movement's activities after his release from Israeli custody in November, the army said. El-Haj reportedly was a coordinator between Hamas and other terrorist organizations in and around Jenin, and recently he worked to calm escalating tensions in the area between Hamas and Fatah forces loyal to Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas.
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