Suspects admit to killing IDF colonel 'as a gift to the Palestinian people'

Two Palestinians admit to murder of Saraya Ofer in the Jordan Valley last month; say initially planned just to rob him.

Men arrested for murder of former IDF colonel (photo credit: Courtesy)
Men arrested for murder of former IDF colonel
(photo credit: Courtesy)
The Shin Bet (Israel Security Agency) released new details on Thursday from its investigation into the murder of former senior IDF officer, Col. (res.) Sraya Ofer, who fell victim to a deadly assault by two Palestinians outside of his Jordan Valley home last month.
Two men arrested by security forces for the slaying, 18-year-old Uda Harub, and 21-year-old Bashir Harub, of the West Bank village of Deir Samat near Hebron, had already confessed to killing Ofer, and during subsequent questioning, shed light on the their motives, saying they originally planned a robbery, and then decided on a terrorist plot.
Two weeks before the attack, the murder suspects arrived at Ofer’s home in the vacation resort of Barush to surveillance the area ahead of a violent robbery they were planning, according to their testimony.
“After learning that a senior army officer lived there, who might be armed, they decided to carry out a murder ‘as a gift to the Palestinian people and to Hamas prisoners for the festival of sacrifice [Id al- Adha],’” the suspects said during questioning, according to the Shin Bet.
They then planned to take valuable items and any weapons from the home.
“The men became more religious before the attack, and prayed for success before heading to Ofer’s home and carrying out the murder,” security forces said.
Armed with a pick-ax and an ax, the two sneaked into Ofer’s property on the night of October 10, and waited for him and his wife to arrive.
They set upon Ofer, as his wife, Monique, fled the scene.
The men threw away their weapons after killing Ofer and fled on foot, before entering a vehicle, the investigation found.
“They considered crossing the border into Jordan to flee, but changed their minds, and made contact with Abd Shuamra, 27, a resident of E-Ram, north of Jerusalem, so that he could help them get away from the scene of the terror attack.
After he picked them up, the two told him of the murder they carried out, and changed clothes at his home. Abd Shuamra confessed to his role as well, the Shin Bet said.
State prosecutors will soon receive the case to begin proceedings against the suspects.