IDF to demolish home of Ariel attacker next week

On March 17th Abu Lila fatally stabbed 19-year-old St.-Sgt. Gal Keidan at the Ariel junction and then stole his gun, shooting him at close range before opening fire at vehicles passing by.

April 3, 2019 23:53
3 minute read.
Manhunt for Ariel terrorist (IDF SPOKESPERSON'S OFFICE)

Manhunt for Ariel terrorist (IDF SPOKESPERSON'S OFFICE). (photo credit: IDF SPOKESPERSON'S OFFICE)


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The IDF informed the family of a Palestinian who killed an IDF soldier and Israeli civilian in a terror attack outside the settlement of Ariel that their home will be confiscated and demolished in less than a week.

The head of the Central Command, Maj.-Gen. Nadav Padan, signed an order on Wednesday to confiscate and demolish the apartment where Omar Abu Lila lived.

The demolition order will take effect on Tuesday.

Abu Lila fatally stabbed 19-year-old St.-Sgt. Gal Keidan on March 17 at the Ariel junction and then stole his gun, shooting him at close range before opening fire at vehicles passing through the junction, fatally hitting a 47-year-old father of 11, Rabbi Ahiad Ettinger.

Abu Lila then stole a car and drove to the nearby Gitai junction, where again opened fire, striking soldier St.-Sgt. Alexander Dvorsky, who remains in the hospital.

Abu Lila then fled on foot into the nearby village of Burqin, and was killed in a shootout with authorities two days later in the Palestinian village of Abwein, north of Ramallah.

While some NGOs and human rights organizations criticize the army for using collective punishment by demolishing the homes of the terrorist’s families, the IDF believes they are a key deterrent to stop other potential attackers.

Nevertheless homes razed by the Israeli military have been rebuilt, most recently by the family of  Ashraf Walid Suleiman Na’alwa who shot dead two Israeli civilians in the Barkan industrial zone in October.

Meanwhile, a terrorist who attempted on Wednesday to stab an Israeli driver stuck in a traffic jam at the Bitot Junction near the village of Huwara south of Nablus, was shot by the driver and subsequently died. The Palestinian was transferred to Beilinson Hospital in critical condition and died from his wounds.

Yehoshua Sherman, director of URP’s field division, was in the vehicle when the Palestinian, holding a knife, tried to open the door.

“I left the vehicle while the terrorist tried to overtake the next vehicle. I neutralized him by gunfire while assisting another resident from a nearby settlement who was behind me,” Sherman said.

“This incident illustrates the importance of completing the construction of the Huwara bypass as agreed with the prime minister,” said the head of the Shomron Regional Council Yossi Dagan. Dagan also backed the father who neutralized the terrorist and saved his daughter.

Samaria has been a hotbed for terrorist attacks and attempted terrorist attacks in recent months.

Late last month, a bus was set alight after terrorist allegedly threw a Molotov cocktail at it in the northern West Bank near the settlement of Kedumim, according to local media reports.

While the bus was damaged, there were no injuries since it was empty.

Just days before, two Israelis were lightly injured after a Molotov cocktail was thrown at their vehicle in the northern West Bank, close to the city of Nablus.

On March 18, two Israelis, a 19-year-old soldier and 47-year-old father of 11, were killed in a terrorist attack near the settlement of Ariel.

An IDF officer was seriously injured and a Border Police soldier was lightly injured after Palestinians rammed them with their car during an arrest operation in the West Bank, the military reported following the event.

The force opened fire on the vehicle’s three occupants, killing two and wounding the third, who was arrested. The Palestinian Ministry of Health identified the two killed as 20-year-olds Amir Mahmoud Darraj from the village of Kharbatha al-Misbah and Youssef Raed Mahmoud Anqawi from Beit Sira. The injured Palestinian, also aged 20, was identified as Haitham Jumaa Alqam from the village of Safa.

Ilanit Chernick contributed to this report.

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