PM to PA: Take harsh steps against Nablus shooter

Netanyahu condemns killing of Livnat by PA policeman; Barak says lack of security coordination cannot justify shooting at innocent people.

By JPOST.COM STAFF
April 24, 2011 19:19
2 minute read.
Netanyahu

Netanyahu 311 reuters. (photo credit: Reuters)

Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu on Sunday condemned the killing of Ben Yosef Livnat earlier in the day at Joseph's Tomb in Nablus, and demanded that the Palestinian Authority "take serious steps against the terrorists who committed this criminal act against Jewish worshipers on their way to pray."

Netanyahu spoke with Ben Yosef's aunt, Minister of Sports and Culture Limor Livnat and held the hands of the Livnat family during the victim's funeral in Jerusalem.

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Thousands of people attended Ben Yosef's funeral, including settlement leaders from the West Bank, right-wing activists, rabbis and public figures.

During the funeral, the sports and culture minister commented on her nephew's murder, saying "I woke up this morning, Ben Yosef's mom called me and told me he was murdered by a terrorist disguised as a Palestinian policeman. This is cold-blooded murder. Ben Yosef went to pray with other Jews, and he was murdered simply because he was Jewish. It is hard to grasp these things. My own nephew, a personal sacrifice, may he be the last victim."

Earlier Sunday, Defense Minister Ehud Barak strongly condemned the murder of Ben Yosef and the injury of four others in the Nablus shooting attack and said that no lack of security coordination can justify the opening of fire at innocent people.

Barak ordered the IDF to investigate the incident and demanded that the Palestinian Authority investigate the shooting swiftly and take all the necessary steps against the shooter.

Ben Yosef was killed, and three others were injured, after their vehicle was shot at by a Palestinian Authority policeman as the group was exiting the city from prayer services held at Joseph's Tomb. Magen David Adom said one person was in serious condition, one in moderate condition and two others in light condition.

Dani Dayan, who heads the Council of Jewish Communities of Judea, Samaria and the Gaza Strip said that Palestinian police knew they were targeting worshipers who had come to pray at Joseph’s Tomb in a pre-dawn trip.

“This is a terrorist attack from every point of view. There was no provocation here. The Palestinian police knew exactly whom they were shooting at. They knew perfectly well that they [the worshipers] were unarmed. They might have even known the person,” Dayan told The Jerusalem Post on Sunday.

He dismissed all claims that the Palestinians felt threatened or did not know who their victims were. Breslev worshipers often go to the tomb without prior coordination with the IDF, he said.

Meanwhile, MK Danny Danon (Likud) called on the US to reconsider its funding of the Palestinian security forces, as well as the training exercises that it does with them. He passed this request on to Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL), Chairman of the US House Foreign Affairs Committee.

"As a true friend of Israel, we expect that the objective of this training would be to ensure Israeli security and not to kill its citizens," he said.


Yaakov Lappin and Tovah Lazaroff contributed to this report.


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