Ma'an News Agency
February 10, 2012 - 1:00am

HEBRON (Ma’an) -- Palestinian security forces detained 56 Palestinians sheltering in the Israeli-controlled section of Hebron early Friday, after coordination with Israeli authorities.

The dawn raid was the second Palestinian incursion into Hebron's H2 area in recent weeks, under full Israeli control since a 1997 deal split the city.

A Palestinian security official told Ma'an the sweep of arrests was permitted by Israeli authorities after pressure from Europe and the US.

Residents told a Ma'an correspondent they hoped the raid would end the use of the Israeli-zone as a refuge by criminals.

Israel has full security control over the H2 zone, which includes Israeli settlements but also Palestinian residential areas and Hebron's Old City.

Around 800 Jewish settlers live among 30,000 Palestinians in areas of Israeli jurisdiction.

Early on Jan. 6, Palestinian forces were granted access to H2 to conduct arrests for the first time since 1997.

Security officers arrested eight Palestinians in the raid, before a gun battle broke out injuring two residents.

A security official told Ma'an at the time there was no longer any place to escape the law in Hebron. "Outlaws will have nowhere to go except Palestinian prison after today," he said.


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