Ziad Awad (left) and his son Azzadin Ziad Hassan Awad. .
(photo credit: ISRAEL SECURITY AGENCY)
A convicted Hamas operative released in the October 2011 Gilad Shalit prisoner exchange was sentenced Monday to two life sentences for murdering Ch.-Supt. Baruch Mizrahi during a 2014 West Bank Passover terror attack.
Ziad Awad, 45, was one of 1,027 Arab prisoners exchanged for Shalit by his Hamas captures. Awad had been sentenced to life in prison in 1993 for killing Palestinians he accused of collaborating with Israel.
On April 14 of 2014, Awad shot and killed Mizrahi and wounded his wife, Hadas, as well as two of their five children near the Tarkumiya checkpoint in the West Bank while the family was driving to a Seder in Kiryat Arba. He then fled the scene on a motorcycle.
Awad’s son Izzadin Ziad Hassan Awad, 21, was convicted of aiding him in the murder. He was sentenced Tuesday to 20 years imprisonment.
During the investigation, Izzadin turned in the AK-47 assault rifle used in the attack and provided information about the crime that indicated his involvement in it, according to the Shin Bet (Israel Security Agency).
The Shin Bet said they also learned that Awad purchased the motorcycle and assault rifle to carry out the attack. After the murder, Awad told his son that “according to Islam, anyone who kills a Jew goes to heaven
,” the Shin Bet said.
In July of 2014, Awad’s residence became the first West Bank Palestinian home to be demolished by Israel since 2005, when it announced a moratorium on the punitive practice against terrorists’ families.
Mizrahi, 46, served in the Investigation and Intelligence unit of the police, was a lieutenant colonel in the IDF reserves, and served in the “8200” unit of the Military Intelligence directorate. The elder Awad was found guilty of murder, attempted murder, and possession of a weapon.
During his sentencing Monday, Mizrahi’s wife condemned the government for allowing Awad to ever walk free and receive a hero’s welcome by Palestinian society, which rewarded him with what she deemed a “severance package.”
“The State of Israel allows animals to go free and celebrate at our expense,” she said. “We need to put an end to the terrorists’ celebrations.”
She continued: “The Israeli government must immediately push for a death sentence for terrorists