Israel has raided the homes of Islamic State suspects and arrested two people

Israeli security forces say they have raided the homes of at least 12 Arab nationals and arrested two men suspected of involvement with Islamic State groups, who have claimed responsibility for the killing of a pair of Israeli police officers over the weekend.

Tel Aviv, Israel – Israeli security services raided the homes of at least 12 Arab nationals and arrested two people suspected of having links to the Islamic State group in a crackdown triggered by a recent deadly attack, authorities said Tuesday.

Hours before the operation, Prime Minister Naftali Bennett said the recent attack inside Israel, which killed six people, had marked a “new situation” that required tighter security.

Law enforcement officials say 31 homes and sites in northern Israel have been searched overnight, an area where gunmen had taken refuge that killed two police officers and injured four others in the town of Hadera over the weekend.

In addition to Sunday’s attack, Islamic State groups carried out a series of stabbings in southern Israel on Tuesday, killing four people. Police shot dead two gunmen and shot dead a pedestrian, police said.

Israeli leaders have condemned the killings and pointed to the passage of time. Both attacks took place ahead of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, and Sunday’s killings came on the eve of a high-profile meeting between the foreign ministers of the four Arab states and the United States in the Israeli Negev. Four Arab countries, including the United States – Egypt, Morocco, Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates – have condemned the killings.

Ramadan is scheduled to start from Saturday. Last year, clashes between Israeli police and Muslim protesters during the holy month turned into an 11-day war between Israel and Hamas, the Islamic militant group that rules Gaza. Hamas called the shooting a “heroic operation.”

IS attacks are rare inside Israel.

The group operates mainly in Iraq and Syria, where it has recently stepped up attacks on security forces. It no longer controls any territory but works through sleeper cells. IS has claimed responsibility for attacks on Israeli troops in the past and has branches in Afghanistan and other countries.

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