Israel’s internal security agency announced the arrest of several Jewish suspects due to “concrete suspicions” that they were involved in the July firebombing of a Palestinian home that left a toddler and his parents dead, the Associated Press reported Thursday.
The arson attack occurred in July in the West Bank village of Duma. In the middle of the night, assailants, believed to be Jewish extremists, lobbed a firebomb into the Dawabsheh family’s home, where four family members were asleep. Ali Dawabsheh, a toddler, was burned to death, while his mother and father later died of their wounds. His 4-year-old brother Ahmad is being treated in an Israeli hospital. Hebrew graffiti reading “revenge” sprayed on the walls of the home hinted that the attackers were Jewish.
Israeli leaders from across the political spectrum condemned the attack, but the lack of suspects has remained a sore point among Palestinians. Earlier this month, Israel’s defense minister had said Jewish extremists were involved, but that there was not enough evidence to prosecute.
The Shin Bet, Israel’s internal security agency, said Thursday it had arrested a number of youths belonging to a “Jewish terrorist” organization and that interrogators were checking “concrete suspicions” they were connected to the Duma attack.
The Times of Israel reported that Hussein Dawabsha, the grandfather of the surviving child, said he hopes that Israeli authorities “will punish them in the most severe manner possible.”
The attack drew immediate condemnations from Israeli leaders across the political and religious spectrum. In a statement published on his Facebook page, Israeli President Reuven Rivlin wrote at the time:
I feel a sense of shame, and moreover a sense of pain. Pain over the murder of a small baby. Pain that from my people, there are those who have chosen the path of terrorism, and have lost their humanity. Their path is not my path. Their path is not our path. Their path is not the path of the State of Israel, or of the Jewish People.
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