Palestinian sources, in the besieged coastal region, have reported that several Israeli war jets have been flying over various areas of the Gaza Strip, while Israel also ordered all border and trade terminals in Gaza shut, as the search for three Israeli settlers, missing in the West Bank, continues amidst the assumption they have been kidnapped, and might have been moved to Gaza.The Milad News Agency has reported that several Israeli fighter jets, and drones, have been seen over various areas in Gaza, especially over the eastern part of the Gaza Strip, the closest to Hebron, in the southern part of the occupied West Bank, although without geographical contiguity.
Milad also stated that different armed resistance groups have vacated their camps and military centers, while field leaders, even political leaders, are now hiding due to possible Israeli military strikes, assassinations and the possibility of a massive military invasion.
Israel announced all border and trade terminals in the Gaza Strip are now closed until further notice.
The missing Israeli settlers are students of a Yeshiva near the Gush Etzion settlement in the occupied West Bank.
Israeli daily Haaretz has reported that two of the missing settlers are 16 years old, one is 19, and that one of them holds U.S. citizenship.
It added that the army is trying to determine whether the stolen Israeli car that was found torched in the southern Hebron Hill has anything to do with the issue, and that Israel’s security devices and the army believe “the kidnapping was carried out by a well-organized, and well-prepared cell”.
Israel believes the “fighters who abducted the settlers might try to move them to Gaza”.
The army also installed dozens of roadblocks in different parts of the West Bank, especially in the Hebron district, and in different areas in the Bethlehem district.
Israeli TV, Channel 2, has reported that the Ministerial Cabinet of the Israeli government held a session discussing the “abduction” of the three soldiers”, and stated that the search could last for several days, or even weeks, especially since Israel, so far, has no information that could get it closer to pinpointing their location.
Israel said that the disappearance of the three Israelis comes as “a result of the interim unity government”, following the reconciliation and unity deal, signed between Fateh and Hamas movements.
Although no factions have claimed responsibility for the abduction of the three Israelis, Israeli sources alleged “a Salafist Islamic group, affiliated with al-Qaida, claimed responsibility for the abduction”. The report was never confirmed.
The three Israelis were hitchhiking in the West Bank on Thursday when they went missing.
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