Men who kidnapped and murdered teenagers, school teachers and off-duty soldiers,
Palestinian fighters who killed suspected collaborators and men from the West
Bank and Gaza Strip with whom they had worked or lived side-by-side with for
years are among the 104 prisoners expected to be released as a gesture to the PA
for the resumption of peace talks.
A glance at the lists published by the
Palestinian Prisoners’ Club (PPC) and leaked to Israeli websites by Israeli
officials shows men responsible for terror attacks ranging from complicated,
planned-out operations to hastily crafted acts of brutal violence directed at
Deep within the list are the names of two Gaza Strip natives,
Yusef Said al-Al and Ayman Taleb Abu Sitteh, who late at night on December 31,
1993, broke into the Ramle house of David Bublil after he and an acquaintance,
Haim Weitzman, had turned in for the night. They stabbed the two men to death as
they slept and then mutilated their bodies, cutting off their ears as
That Ramle murder came a few years after 48-year-old Haim
Taktuk disappeared without a trace in the central Israeli city. Five months
later, investigators made their way to the Ramle home of Bashir Abdallah Khatib,
where they found Taktuk’s body buried inside the recently poured concrete floor
of a storeroom.
Khatib, No. 23 on the PPC’s list, is one of more than a
dozen Israeli Arabs on the list, all of whom Israel expressed strong reluctance
about releasing. These prisoners are typically seen as a greater security threat
than their Palestinian counterparts, because their blue ID cards allow them the
ability to travel freely across Israel.
Collectively, the small number of
Israeli Arabs on the list are responsible for some of the most grisly crimes of
the pre-Oslo years.
They include the four men from Wadi Ara – all members
of the Islamic Movement – who took part in the infamous “Night of
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On the night of February 14, 1992, the four men infiltrated
an IDF training base next to Kibbutz Galed and attacked a group of teenage Nahal
recruits, hacking three of them to death with hatchets, knives and a pitchfork.
The three men were sentenced to three life sentences each.
Abdallah Bani Hasan and Haza’a Mohamed Sa’di, Nos. 9 and 10 on the list, have
both been in Israeli prison since July 1985 for the murders of Afula school
teachers Leah Elmakayis and Yosef Eliyahu, who were hiking in the North when
they were ambushed and murdered.
Their bodies were found in a pasture in
the Gilboa area.
The prisoners also include two West Bank men responsible
for one of the most infamous attacks of the first intifada. Juma’ah Ibrahim Adam
from Ramallah and Mahmoud Salem Kharbish from Jericho were arrested in October
1988 shortly after they threw a Molotov cocktail at an Egged bus north of
Jericho, which burst into flames killing Rachel Weiss and three of her young
children, including an infant boy. The bombing also took the life of soldier
David Delarosa, who ran on board in a failed attempt to save the
In a similar incident, Mohamed Adal Daoud threw a firebomb at a
car driven by Ophra Tal, killing her and her son Tal in December
The list also includes a number of men arrested for the murders of
Israeli Arabs and Palestinians accused of being collaborators with Israel,
including Yusef Abdel Hamid Irshaid, who killed five people suspected of
collaborating as well as two men charged with the murder of Shin Bet (Israel
Security Agency) agent Haim Nahmani, found stabbed and beaten to death with a
hammer in Rehavia in west Jerusalem in January 1993.
The list also
includes men who murdered neighbors and co-workers, employers and
Nablus-native Sharif Hasan Abu Dhailah will be set for
release, after he, in May 1992, stabbed to death Avraham Osher, his employer of
15 years at Moshav Bakat. Osher was found stabbed to death in the date field he
managed at a nearby moshav. Abu Dahila also worked at the date field, and the
two men were reportedly longtime friends, with both visiting each other’s
families on a number of occasions.
Najeh Mohamed Muqbel of Hebron will be
released after a little over two decades for the 1990 murder of attorney Ya’acov
Shalom, the owner of the cafe where Muqbel worked as a cook.
those on the list were terrorists who took part in more elaborate
Muayad Salim Hijja of Nablus has been in prison since May 1992,
after he swam from the port of Aqaba in Jordan to the beach in Eilat, where he
made his way to the Institute for Marine Sciences and shot to death the
institute’s guard, Yosef Shirazi, who was unarmed and 62 at the time of his
The list also includes Mahmoud Musa Issa, the head of the Hamas
cell that kidnapped Border Police officer Nissim Toledano from his hometown of
Lod in December 1992, and dumped his stabbed, beaten body in a field in the West
Bank two days later, after a failed attempt to use him as a bargaining chip to
secure the release of then Hamas leader Sheikh Ahmed Yassin.
kidnapping in August 1990, Mohamed Yusef Shamasneh and Abdel Jawad Yusef
Shamasneh of east Jerusalem forced teenagers Lior Tubul and Ronen Karmani into a
truck near the Ramot junction and took them to a dry creek bed near Beit Hanina,
where after a short struggle they stabbed both of them to death. Those two are
toward the end of the list, Nos. 90 and 91, respectively.
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