Scene of suspected ramming terror attack in Jerusalem, January 8, 2017.
(photo credit:MAGEN DAVID ADOM)
The Interior Ministry has initiated plans to revoke the residential status of 12 family members of the east Jerusalem terrorist Fadi al-Qanbar, 28, who murdered four soldiers and wounded 17 others during Sunday’s truck-ramming attack in Armon Hanatziv.
Additionally, Qanbar’s Jabl Mukaber home is scheduled to be demolished.
The soldiers killed were cadet Shir Hajaj, 22, of Ma’aleh Adumim; cadet Erez Orbach, 20, of Alon Shvut; cadet Shira Tzur, 20, of Haifa; and Lt. Yael Yekutiel, 20, of Givatayim – all of whom were buried on Mount Herzl earlier this week.
(Funeral held for soldier killed in Jerusalem terror attack Sunday)
Prior to carrying out the attack with a flatbed truck adjacent to the Haas Promenade in Armon Hanatziv, Qanbar, a married father of four, reportedly posted multiple comments on his Facebook page praising ISIS.
Noting the unprecedented number of family revocations issued for the attack – which are usually reserved for surviving terrorists and their spouses – Interior Minister Arye Deri said the move is intended to send a firm message to other potential terrorists who exploit receiving state benefits.
“From now on, anyone who plots, plans or considers carrying out an attack will know that his family will pay a heavy price for his actions,” he said on Tuesday.
“The consequences will be harsh and far-reaching.”
“This decision signals a new era against terrorism and terrorists who carry out terrible attacks against civilians,” Deri said. “From now on, there will be no tolerance shown to anyone involved in attacks against Israel – including their relatives.”
According to Deri, the family members – all residents of Jebl Mukaber, who purportedly “have connection to ISIS” – have received notices from the Population and Immigration Authority informing them of their pending stripped residential status.
However, the terrorist’s brother, Sami al-Qanbar, who was arrested on Monday along with multiple other relatives for allegedly knowing of the attack before it was carried out, told Channel 2 that he had no such knowledge, adding that his brother was not affiliated with ISIS.
Moreover, he claimed that his brother’s truck likely had faulty brakes, and that “he didn’t mean to commit a terrorist attack.”
Regardless, the ministry’s measure will likely be overruled by the High Court, which has previously deemed the practice of carrying out revocations to extended family members illegal.
Meanwhile, the government has initiated preparations to demolish Qanbar’s Jebl Mukaber home, a routine measure used as a deterrent to other prospective terrorists.
Following the unanimous approval of the security cabinet, the IDF’s Engineering Corps’ Special Operations Unit is expected to raze the home in the coming days.
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