Outlets affiliated with the Palestinian Authority and its dominant Fatah party have granted the honorary title of “shahid,” or martyr, to a Palestinian who murdered a 13-year-old Israeli girl early Thursday morning.
Muhammad Nasser Tarayrah broke into the West Bank community of Kiryat Arba and stabbed Hallel Yaffa Ariel to death as she slept before being shot and killed by security officers. Fatah’s official Facebook page promptly posted a picture of Tarayrah and declared him a martyr, which the nonprofit group Palestinian Media Watch described as “the highest honor achievable in Islam according to the Palestinian Authority.” WAFA, the PA’s official news agency, also called Tarayrah a martyr. This designation means that under Palestinian law, Tarayrah’s family is now eligible for monthly stipends from the PA, Palestinian Media Watch explained.
Tarayrah’s mother praised her son while speaking to a news outlet in Hebron after the attack, saying: “My son is a hero. He made me proud. My son died as a Martyr defending Jerusalem and the Al-Aqsa Mosque. Praise be to Allah, Lord of the Worlds, he [my son] has joined the Martyrs before him, and he is not better than them. Allah willing, all of them will follow this path, all the youth of Palestine. Allah be praised.”
In a statement released following the murder, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called on “enlightened nations” to demand that the PA end its incitement against Israelis. “They must pressure the one who heads the network of incitement that leads to the murder of children in their beds and not the State of Israel, which is working to protect its children and its citizens,” he said.
Leading Palestinian officials, including Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, have been accused of inciting violence against Israelis. Songs, re-enactments, and graphics that celebrate terrorist attacks often go viral on Palestinian social media. Such attacks have broad support in the Palestinian territories; a poll conducted over the first three months of 2016 found that over 60 percent of Palestinians approve of “armed attacks against Israeli civilians inside Israel.”
[Photo: Twitter ]