By YAAKOV LAPPIN
A Beduin soldier from the Special Desert Patrol was shot dead by a second Beduin soldier from his unit on Sunday in Beersheba's Kanyon Hanegev mall, causing panic among shoppers.
Witnesses said two men in their 20s got into an argument over a minor issue, which quickly deteriorated into a shooting incident. Three shots were fired at the victim, police said.
He was rushed to the city's Soroka University Medical Center, and declared dead on arrival.
Police have arrested the gunman.
"An officer on patrol arrived on the scene half a minute after the incident and made the arrest," Southern Police District chief Cmdr. Yohanan Danino said.
"The suspect could not have escaped even if he wanted to," he added.
Since the shooting, police in Rahat, where the soldiers hail from, have beefed up their security in an effort to stave off a revenge attack by the family of the slain soldier.
"This is a possibility we must take into account, and prepare for," Negev Police spokesman Tamir Abatbi told The Jerusalem Post.
Following the shooting, Rahat Mayor Faiz Abu-Sabihan has reportedly asked OC Southern Command Maj.-Gen. Yoav Galant to ban Beduin soldiers from bringing their weapons home on leave.
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