Israel

Palestinian Official Praises “Heroism” of Terrorist Who Stabbed and Shot 12 in Beersheba Bus Station

A terror attack in the southern Israeli city of Beersheba last night killed one and injured 11 more, The Times of Israel reported yesterday. A top Palestinian official praised the attack as an “act of heroism.”

According to the police, following an initial investigation, the attacker stabbed a soldier and stole his weapon, opening fire on the crowded bus terminal.

The soldier later died of his wounds after being rushed to a hospital in the area.

Rescue officials said 11 people were injured in the attack, which occurred at about 7:30 p.m.

The attack was the latest in a weekend that saw seven attempted stabbings in Jerusalem and Hebron.

In the confusion after the Palestinian terrorist stabbed the Israeli soldier, a security officer shot an Eritrean man who was mistakenly believed to be involved in the attack. The Eritrean, identified as Haftom Zarhum, later died of his wounds. The police are investigating the circumstances surrounding his death. The soldier who was killed was identified as Omri Levi.

The terrorist, identified as Muhanad Alukabi, 21, was from a nearby Bedouin village. The Times reported that Bedouin leaders condemned the attack, while the terrorist’s father, Khalil Alukabi, said, “This is an individual act carried out by my son on his own accord. We are against violence.”

“Following [Sunday’s] terrorist attack at the Beersheba central bus station in which two innocent people lost their lives, we utterly and unreservedly condemn this despicable act and reject violence of any sort,” Hura Mayor Mohammed Alnabari said in a statement as community leaders gathered for an urgent meeting.

Another Bedouin mayor, Talal al-Krenawi of the city of Rahat, reportedly told Israel’s Channel 2, “His family is not known as a family that encourages acts of terrorism. The head of their family, Sheikh Alukabi, helped establish this state,” he added. “This is why we are even more shocked; we really cannot comprehend it.”

The Jerusalem Post reported that Jibril Rajoub, Palestinian Football Association Chairman and a possible successor to Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, called the attack an “act of heroism.”

Earlier this month, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu condemned the “wild and mendacious incitement by Hamas, the Palestinian Authority,” saying it was fueling the latest wave of Palestinian terror attacks against Israelis. Two days after Netanyahu’s remarks, Ynet reported that Fatah, the party of President Abbas, was distributing official flyers in honor of several of the terrorists.

[Photo: Reuters  / YouTube ]