Checkpoint stabbings mar weekend

Border policeman stabbed in Hebron, would-be attack thwarted at Kalandiya.

idf checkpoint 298.88 (photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski)
idf checkpoint 298.88
(photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski)
Violence marked the last days of Pessah after two border policemen were stabbed on Sunday near the Cave of Patriarchs in Hebron. One border policeman was moderately hurt and the other suffered minor wounds after he was stabbed in the hand. The attacker, a 17-year-old Palestinian, was shot. He was taken to Hadassah-University Hospital in Jerusalem's Ein Kerem. On Monday, a 23-year-old Palestinian woman was arrested at a security checkpoint on the outskirts of Jerusalem after two knives were found in her possession, police said. The woman, a Ramallah resident, told police that she came to the Kalandiya crossing to stab security personnel, Jerusalem police spokesman Shmuel Ben-Ruby said. The would-be attacker had been released from prison several months ago on similar charges, the police said. Nissan Slomiansky (NU/NRP) charged Defense Minister Amir Peretz's decision to evacuate a Palestinian home in Hebron recently occupied by settlers was the catalyst for Sunday's Hebron attack. The settlers claim that they legally purchased the home. "The stabbing in the Cave of the Patriarchs is a direct result of the statements of Peretz, who busies himself with evacuating Jews from their legally-purchased homes to win votes in his party's primaries," he said. "Peretz should only be worried about the security of Jews, not his political future." Also Monday, defense sources expressed satisfaction with an announcement by Egypt that its policemen had arrested a Palestinian in the Sinai Peninsula Sunday who allegedly crossed from Gaza to Egypt in one of two recently dug tunnels, a security official said. The two tunnels were uncovered in the Egyptian border city of Rafah. The first tunnel was found by border guards and police in the area, who arrested a Palestinian man in his early 20s as he tried to cross the border in the freshly dug tunnel, the official said. Capt. Muhammad Badr of the North Sinai Peninsula police said police found water and food inside this tunnel. The second tunnel was discovered inside a residential area in the city, Badr said. "The Egyptians have stepped up efforts and we are feeling the results," explained a senior defense official who noted that the Egyptians had discovered a number of tunnels in the past few weeks. Etgar Lefkovits, AP and Jerusalem Post Staff contributed to this report.