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West Bank on verge of explosion as Israel-Hamas war rages into week 3

The West Bank was tense even before the Hamas-Israel war amid the emergence of armed groups and almost daily Israeli raids in Palestinian cities and towns.
A woman draped in a Palestinian flag prepares to hurl stones toward Israeli forces during clashes with them at the northern entrance of the West Bank city of Ramallah near the Israeli settlement of Beit El on October 20, 2023, as battles continue between Israel and the Palestinian Hamas group. (Photo by Jaafar ASHTIYEH / AFP) (Photo by JAAFAR ASHTIYEH/AFP via Getty Images)

RAMALLAH, West Bank — As the Hamas-Israel war rages in Gaza, Israel is intensifying raids and arrests in the West Bank in an attempt to prevent an eruption on another front.

The Palestinian health ministry in Ramallah reported that at least 81 Palestinians have been killed by Israeli troops or settlers in the West Bank since the Gaza conflict erupted on October 7.

Palestinians in the West Bank are enraged by the bombardment of Gaza along with the silence of the Arab states and the international community, which they view as complicit in Israel's actions. Their anger is also directed at the Palestinian Authority (PA) and its stance, which they believe does not meet the moment of what Israel is doing to Gaza.

On Tuesday evening, hundreds flooded the streets of major West Bank cities and towns after a deadly airstrike, initially blamed on Israel, hit al-Ahli Arab Hospital in Gaza City, killing hundreds of Palestinians. 

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