Scene of terror attack in Ramle.
(photo credit: POLICE SPOKESPERSON'S UNIT)
Two Israeli-Arab teenage girls were indicted Thursday for stabbing and lightly wounding a security guard on February 4 at Ramle’s Central Bus Station.
A Justice Ministry statement said the two 14-year-olds were accused of attempted murder with each wanting to become a “shahid” (Arabic for martyrs), waging the attack for the sake of their religious beliefs as part of the “Knife Intafada.”
The suspects, whose names remain under gag order, were also charged with conspiracy to commit a felony and illegal possession of a weapon.
Thursday’s attack took place near the entrance to a mall next to the city’s main bus terminal and government offices, in what police referred to as a thwarted terrorist attack.
According to the statement, the indictment filed in the Lod District Court said the suspects had intended to stab soldiers. However, having passed by the mall three times without seeing soldiers there, they attacked the guard at the mall’s entrance, instead, after he asked them for identification.
As they stabbed him the teens shouted “Allah, Allah” and “death to you all.”
They wounded the guard lightly in the hand and leg, Central District spokesman Ch.-Supt. Ami Ben-David said.
The duo decided to carry out the attack, described as nationalistically-motivated, instead of going to school, the statement adds.
They had originally planned to carry out the attack a day earlier but postponed it.
One of the teens had a school backpack with her and a picture taken at the scene by a police photographer showed the contents of the bag scattered across the pavement, including schoolwork, a calculator, a juice bag and two knives.
The statement said the girls had been inspired by a shooting and knifing the day before at Jerusalem’s Damascus Gate, in which three Arab terrorists killed a Border Police officer.
Ben-David said IDF soldiers arrested the assailants at the scene and took them to the Ramle police station. Both are Israeli citizens, from Ramle,- Ben-David said.
Ramle, is a mixed Jewish and Arab city where the two groups live largely in peaceful coexistence.
But both girls are from the Jawarish neighborhood, a self-contained Arab community within the city that has no Jewish residents and is known for crime and poverty, as a center of illegal drug trades and a home to warring crime clans.
Ben-David said that under questioning the teens said they had perpetrated the attack “because of what’s happening at al-Aksa.”Mor Shimoni and Ben Hartman contributed to this report