Thursday, April 2, 2009

Axe-wielding terrorist kills boy, wounds 7-year-old in Bat Ayin

from The Jerusalem Post
April 2, 2009

Government spokesman Mark Regev condemned the attack as a "senseless act of brutality against innocents."

Speaking by phone from the scene, Magen David Adom paramedic Ronen Bashri told The Jerusalem Post that ambulances and emergency response teams were called to the settlement after receiving a report of an axe attack.

"We found a seven-year-old boy fully conscious with a head injury caused by a sharp object," Bashri said. "And we found a 16-year-old whom we had to declare dead on the scene."

Nativ's funeral will be at 5:00 p.m. in Kfar Etzion.

Magen David Adom chairman Eli Bin told the Post, "I can confirm that an axe caused the fatal head injury." He added that the injured boy was struck by a sharp object, possibly the same ax. "Both victims sustained head injuries," he said.

The attack ended after one resident who saw the younger boy running from the terrorist stepped in and disarmed the man.

Roadblocks were set up throughout the area in an effort to capture the attacker, and security forces immediately launched an investigation to determine how he entered the community. The initial assumption, that the terrorist was an Arab laborer and had therefore not aroused suspicion, was refuted when it became clear that the settlement only employed Jewish laborers.

The IDF said the possibility that the terrorist was holed up in one of the houses in the settlement had not been ruled out, while Palestinians reported that after the attack, Israeli security forces surrounded a house in the Arab village of Kherbat Tzafa.

IDF sources also said that the army was preparing for the possibility that Jewish settlers would avenge the attack by striking back at Arabs in the West Bank.

Bat Ayin is home to religious settlers who have refused to build a security fence around their community, as is the rule in most other settlements, saying fences are a sign of insecurity.
There was no word on whether the attacker acted alone.

Less than an hour after the attack, the Islamic Jihad claimed responsibility. A murky terrorist group calling itself the Martyrs of Imad Mughniyeh also claimed responsibility for the attack in an e-mail sent to the Associated Press.


For its part, Hamas called the attack a natural response to the "occupation."

"This attack was committed in the framework of the resistance," Ayman Taha, a spokesperson for the group said. "This is a reaction to the continuing occupation and the continued building of settlements."

"This is a natural reaction," he said, "especially against the backdrop of Israeli attacks. We are a people occupied, and it is our right to defend ourselves and to act in every way and with every means at our disposal in order to defend ourselves."
Following the attack, Magen David Adom went on its highest level of alert across the West Bank.

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