Map of Tekoa.
(photo credit: screenshot)
An IDF soldier was wounded when a car driven by a Palestinian man rammed into a group of soldiers near the West Bank settlement of Tekoa on Monday afternoon.
The assailant, identified by the Wafa news agency as 25-year-old Muhammed Ibrahim Jabril, tried stab a few soldiers as he fled the car and was shot and later died of his wounds, the IDF Spokesperson’s Unit said.
The soldier, who was either hit by the car or an object felled in the incident, was taken to Jerusalem’s Shaare Zedek Medical Center with light wounds to his right thigh.
“When we arrived at the scene, we saw an approximately 20-year-old young man, who was fully conscious,” MDA paramedic Zachi Yahav said. “He sustained blows to his upper and lower extremities as a result of being hit by the vehicle.”
An IDF statement said that “a Palestinian assailant attempted a car ramming attack at a junction in Tekoa,” and that the assailant afterward “exited the vehicle armed with a knife and attempted to stab IDF soldiers standing nearby.”
The statement added that “in response to the immediate threat, forces fired toward the assailant, who died.”
According to authorities, some 280 Palestinians, the majority of whom perpetrated or attempted to perpetrate attacks against Israeli civilians, have been killed by security forces in the West Bank and Israel since the recent wave of violence began in September 2015.
According to the Foreign Ministry website, since September 2015, 50 people have been killed in terrorist attacks and 759 people (including four Palestinians) wounded in the West Bank and Israel.
There have been 180 stabbing attacks and 124 attempted stabbings, 150 shootings, 58 vehicular (ramming) attacks and one vehicular (bus) bombing.
Though the violence has since decreased since its peak in the winter of 2015, when there were almost daily attacks, there have been several deadly attacks in recent months.
In mid-June, border policewoman Hadas Malka was killed in an attack by three Palestinian youth who were armed with guns and knives. Malka, 23, was critically stabbed while attempting to reach for her gun to stop the attack. All assailants were shot and killed by security forces responding to the attack.
In April, Sgt. Elchai Taharlev was killed after he was struck by a Palestinian driver at the Ofra Junction on Route 60, northeast of Ramallah. The driver, 21-year-old Malek Ahmad Mousa from the nearby Palestinian village of Silwad, served four months in jail for attempting an attack at the settlement of Adam last year, military officials said. It was the ninth attack in the past two years to be carried out by Silwad residents.
Defense officials have set the profile of the lone-wolf attacker as a Palestinian male between the ages of 15-24 who come from six or seven villages in the West Bank and who target specific locations in the area: the Gush Etzion Junction, Hebron, Tapuah Junction, Kikar Aryieh near Ariel and the southern entrance to Nablus.
In a recent interview with The Jerusalem Post, a senior IDF officer said that the best way to protect against a lone-wolf attack is to prepare and train soldiers how to properly react.
“We are always worried that someone will wake up and want to carry out an attack. We are not able to track these lone wolves with 100% certainty,” the senior officer said at his base outside the West Bank city of Tulkarm, adding that soldiers must recognize that situations can go “from 0-100” in a matter of seconds.Adam Rasgon contributed to this report.