Iran Update, April 20, 2024

Key Takeaways:

  • Gaza Strip: The Nahal Brigade (162nd Division) continued to conduct “targeted raids” along the Netzarim corridor in the central Gaza Strip on April 20.
  • West Bank: Israeli forces conducted operations in the Nour Shams Refugee Camp, Tulkarm for a second day and engaged fighters from several Palestinian militias, including PIJ and the al Aqsa Martyrs’ Brigades on April 20.
  • Lebanon: Lebanese Hezbollah has conducted at least nine attacks from southern Lebanon into northern Israel since CTP-ISW’s last data cutoff on April 19.
  • Iraq: The Iraqi Defense Ministry reported that an explosion occurred at the Popular Mobilization Forces (PMF) Kalsu Headquarters in Babil Province on April 19. No Iraqi government body characterized the explosion as a ”strike.”

Gaza Strip

Axis of Resistance objectives:

Erode the will of the Israeli political establishment and public to sustain clearing operations in the Gaza Strip
Reestablish Hamas as the governing authority in the Gaza Strip

The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) continued to target military infrastructure in the northern Gaza Strip on April 20. The 215th Artillery Brigade (162nd Division) and the IDF Air Force struck a rocket launch site in Beit Hanoun after Palestinian fighters launched rockets targeting Sderot on April 20.[i] The IDF Air Force separately targeted Palestinian fighters and infrastructure to support for Israeli forces operating in the area.[ii]

PIJ and the al Aqsa Martyrs’ Brigades have conducted two rocket attacks from the Gaza Strip targeting Sderot and Nir Am in southern Israel since CTP-ISW’s last data cut off on April 19.[iii]

Recorded reports of attacks; CTP-ISW cannot independently verify impact.

The Al Aqsa Martyrs’ Brigades–the self-proclaimed military wing of Fatah–mortared Israeli forces operating southeast of Zaytoun neighborhood, Gaza City.[iv]

The Nahal Brigade (162nd Division) continued to conduct “targeted raids” along the Netzarim corridor in the central Gaza Strip on April 20.[v] Israeli forces raided Palestinian militia positions and killed fighters operating in the area.[vi] Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) and the al Aqsa Martyrs’ Brigades claimed separate mortar attacks targeting Israeli forces in unspecified areas of the “Netzarim Axis,” which refers to the Israeli-built highway Route 749. Route 749 bisects the Gaza Strip..[vii]

IDF Southern Command commander Maj. Gen. Yaron Finkleman and the 162nd Division commander met to discuss the division’s operations in the Gaza Strip.[viii]

West Bank

Axis of Resistance objectives:

Establish the West Bank as a viable front against Israel

Israeli forces conducted operations in the Nour Shams Refugee Camp, Tulkarm for a second day and engaged fighters from several Palestinian militias, including PIJ and the al Aqsa Martyrs’ Brigades on April 20.[ix]

Israeli forces have engaged Palestinian fighters in at least four locations across the West Bank, including Nour Shams Refugee Camp, since CTP-ISW’s data cut off on April 19.[x] Hamas and the al Aqsa Martyrs’ Brigades shot at Israeli forces stationed checkpoints in Jenin and Tulkarm.[xi]

This map is not an exhaustive depiction of clashes and demonstrations in the West Bank.

Southern Lebanon and Golan Heights

Axis of Resistance objectives:

Deter Israel from conducting a ground operation into Lebanon
Prepare for an expanded and protracted conflict with Israel in the near term
Expel the United States from Syria

Lebanese Hezbollah has conducted at least nine attacks from southern Lebanon into northern Israel since CTP-ISW’s last data cutoff on April 19.[xii]

Recorded reports of attacks; CTP-ISW cannot independently verify impact.

Iran and Axis of Resistance

The Iraqi Defense Ministry reported that an explosion occurred at the Popular Mobilization Forces (PMF) Kalsu Headquarters in Babil Province on April 19.[xiii] The explosion killed one PMF member and injured eight Iraqi Army soldiers according to the Defense Ministry. Local footage showed secondary explosions at Kalsu Headquarters, which suggests that the explosion occurred at a weapons storage facility.[xiv] The United States and Israel denied rumors that they had conducted a strike targeting the base.[xv] Iraq’s Air Defense Command reported that it did not detect any drones or aircraft in the air at the time of the explosion.[xvi] Improper weapons storage has previously caused accidental detonations at PMF weapons storage facilities.[xvii] The Defense Ministry reported that it initiated an official investigation into the cause of the explosion.[xviii] No Iraqi government body characterized the explosion as a ”strike.”

The Islamic Resistance in Iraq claimed one drone attack targeting Eilat, southern Israel, on April 19.[xix] The Islamic Resistance in Iraq claimed that its attack on Eilat was in response to Israel’s “targeting of the Popular Mobilization Forces camps.”

Check Also

U.S. Says Russia ‘Likely’ Deployed Anti-Satellite Weapon In Space; Moscow Rejects Claim

The Pentagon has said Russia “likely” deployed an anti-satellite weapon in space earlier this month, …