Elderly Israeli woman killed in Holon terrorist attack; killer found dead

Security camera footage obtained by Israel Police of the alleged Holon terror attack shows a man attacking the woman with an object in his hand.

 Police near the scene of a suspected murder of an 84-year-old woman in Holon, September 20, 2022.  (photo credit: AVSHALOM SASSONI/FLASH90)
Police near the scene of a suspected murder of an 84-year-old woman in Holon, September 20, 2022.
(photo credit: AVSHALOM SASSONI/FLASH90)

Shulamit Rachel Ovadiah, 84, was identified Wednesday as the elderly woman murdered by a Palestinian terrorist in Holon on Tuesday afternoon. The terrorist was found dead near the central Tel Aviv street of Dizengoff, on Bar Kochba street by police Wednesday morning.

Ovadiah was found dead in the city of Holon near Tel Aviv on Tuesday afternoon, and it was suspected that she was murdered by a Palestinian in an apparent terrorist attack, Israel Police chief Kobi Shabtai said Tuesday.

The Shin Bet (Israel Security Agency) and the police's Special Patrol Unit were running the investigation and were searching the area for the suspect until he was found on Wednesday morning.

"We're after a difficult attack. It appears at the moment that this was likely a terrorist incident."

Israel Police chief Kobi Shabtai

"We're after a difficult attack. It appears at the moment that this was likely a terrorist incident," said Shabtai.

Security camera footage obtained by police showed a man dressed in dark clothing attacking the woman with an object in his hand.

Police identified the suspect as Musa Sarsur, a 28-year-old Palestinian Arab from the West Bank Kalkilya. Sarsur reportedly entered Israel through the Eyal Crossing north of Kfar Saba on Tuesday morning with a valid permit to work in Israel. The Shin Bet had not identified him as a security threat, although he had been detained twice in the past two weeks for questioning by officers who suspected that he was in the country illegally.

 Musa Zarzur who is suspected of murdering an 84-year-old woman in Holon. (credit: ISRAEL POLICE SPOKESPERSON'S UNIT) Musa Zarzur who is suspected of murdering an 84-year-old woman in Holon. (credit: ISRAEL POLICE SPOKESPERSON'S UNIT)

"Terrorism is the embodiment of pure evil," Prime Minister Yair Lapid said in response to the news of the murder. "This is a shocking attack by a despicable and cowardly terrorist who murdered an elderly woman who could not fight him."

"This is a shocking attack by a despicable and cowardly terrorist who murdered an elderly woman who could not fight him."

Israeli Prime Minister Yair Lapid

"The security forces are currently working to find the terrorist, and I trust them to lay hands on him. We will act hard against terrorism, we will catch the operatives and their senders. I send my deepest condolences to the murdered woman's family and strengthen them in their difficult time."

Public Security Minister Omer Bar Lev responded to the attack on Wednesday morning, stating "The serious attack in Holon proves once again that Palestinian terrorism has no inhibitions and no mercy. Israel fights terrorists and their agents hard and uncompromisingly everywhere and at all times, especially in the last few months as the IDF, the police and the Shin Bet work day and night in pursuit of those who seek our harm. When it comes to the fight against terrorism, our enemies will find us determined."

Following a wave of terrorist attacks in Israel

The killing of the woman comes amid a wave of terrorist attacks and attempted terrorist attacks in Israel and the West Bank in recent weeks. Earlier this month, a Palestinian was caught by police in Jaffa carrying a firearm and pipe bombs that he intended to use in a mass terrorist attack in Tel Aviv.

Earlier on Tuesday, shots were fired toward Border Police at the Salem Base along the Seam Line. In the afternoon, shots were fired again toward soldiers near the Seam Line near Faqqu'a in the northern West Bank. No injuries were reported in either incident and Israeli forces are searching for the perpetrators.

This is a developing story.