Palestinian sources told ynet that the majority of the operation was aimed at the capture of three wanted men from the Abu Mustafa Brigades, the military wing of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP).
According to these sources, the three are members of a cell which in recent months had been the subject of failed arrest attempts by the IDF, and who had, in a few incidents, even succeeded in causing injuries to soldiers. It was also reported that the cell was funded and armed by Hamas in order to foment instability in the area.
In recent weeks, in the framework of the security plan for Nablus and its vicinity, Palestinian security forces have arrested a number of militants from Fatah's al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades who have not adhered to the constraints of the agreement.
Those arrested have been placed in jail in Jericho and Palestinian Authority installations in the city. Other armed elements were transferred to PA security headquarters in Ramallah.
'Plan key to PA success in West Bank'
A Fatah official in Nablus told ynet,"Unfortunately we are talking about a part of the Dayton Plan, and increasing cooperation with Israel. Whatever the Israelis can not do, the (Palestinian) Authority comes to do it for them."
Palestinian security sources said Sunday that through the operation PA forces were working to disarm the last traces of the PFLP's infrastructure in Nablus and the northern West Bank. Palestinian officials see the Nablus security plan's success as the key to the strengthening of the PA throughout the entire West Bank.
Even before the operation, a senior Palestinian official told ynet that the PA is determined to succeed in this new campaign. According to him, the PA is close to completing Phase I of the Road Map, but that unfortunately, instead of expressing its appreciation, Israel has chosen to throw additional obstacles in front of the peace process, such as the demand that the Palestinians recognize Israel as a "Jewish State."