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Islamic Militants Arrested Near Jenin

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Israeli soldiers have arrested 16 Islamic extremists in villages near the West Bank town of Jenin.

The crackdown on members of the militant Hamas and Islamic Jihad movements took place over the weekend at the end of the 40-day mourning period for Dr. Fathi Shakaki, the leader of Islamic Jihad who was slain Oct. 26 in Malta.

The arrests came amid stepped-up Israeli security measures to prevent terror attacks by militant Islamic groups in retaliation for Shakaki’s killing.

Islamic Jihad officials have maintained that agents of the Mossad, Israel’s intelligence service, were responsible for the shooting of Shakaki.

Israeli officials refused to confirm or deny their involvement.

Israel officially handed over control of Jenin to the Palestinians on Nov. 13. The weekend arrests took place in villages still under the overall control of Israeli forces.

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