Police in Umm-al-Hiran.
(photo credit: Courtesy)
An Army Radio presenter responded to the alleged vehicular ramming attack that killed an Israeli police officer on Wednesday, saying she empathized with the motorist who was said to have intentionally rammed into security forces ahead of demolitions in an illegal Beduin village in the Negev.
"I would have also run over a policeman if they removed me by force from my house in order to build a settlement for people strong than me," wrote Khen Elmaleh on Facebook.
After several hours, Elmaleh regretted her controversial post and deleted it from her personal page, however network activists managed to document the post and make a print screen before it was deleted. The post caused a wave of angry responses on the social media network.
Aerial footage emerges of deadly suspected ramming attack in Negev
Police officer Erez Levy and the alleged assailant were killed in the suspected ramming attack, in the Beduin village of Umm al-Hiran as police came to carry out home demolitions in the unrecognized village.
Police were investigating the background of the driver, named as Yacoub Abu al Kiyan, 50, who was reportedly a well-known school teacher and member of the Islamic Movement in Israel.
Residents of Umm al-Hiran who spoke with Hebrew media denied that a ramming attack took place, contending that the man lost control of his vehicle after being shot by police.
Joint List MK Ayman Odeh was also wounded in clashes in the area. Odeh was evacuated to Soroka Medical Center in Beersheba. Police contend that he was hit with a rock by protestors, while multiple accounts at the scene say Odeh was struck with a sponge-tipped bullet.
Eliyahu Kamisher contributed to this report.