Nablus (Palestinian Territories): Clashes erupted during an overnight Israeli raid to arrest an alleged Hamas member at a refugee camp in the occupied West Bank, leaving a border policeman and five Palestinians wounded, officials said today.
The clashes that included gunfire lasted for hours at the city of Jenin in the northern West Bank and were among the most violent to occur there in recent years.
Israel's military said in a statement that the raid was carried out to arrest a "senior Hamas operative".
"During the activity, after repeated calls to surrender himself to the forces, security forces demolished the house in which the wanted terrorist was suspectedly hiding," it said.
"A violent riot of hundreds of Palestinians erupted in the area. The crowd hurled rocks and Molotov cocktails at the forces. A border police officer was moderately injured."
Israeli public radio said it was possible that the soldier had been injured when Israeli forces opened fire.
Palestinian security sources and witnesses said that the clashes included exchanges of gunfire between protesters and security forces. They reported five Palestinians lightly wounded.
Palestinian security officials said the house targeted in the raid belonged to Majdi Abu al-Hija, a Hamas official, who was arrested.
They added that a militant from the radical Islamic Jihad group managed to escape during the raid.
The camp where the raid occurred has been home to many Islamic Jihad and Hamas members and has been a flashpoint in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.