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IDF Commander Indicates that Single Hamas Cell Behind Recent Terror Attacks

An IDF commander indicated that the same Hamas cell was behind two deadly drive-by shooting terror attacks during the past week, The Times of Israel reported Friday.

“In the past few days a Hamas terror group cell managed to harm us and exact from us a heavy price,” IDF Central Command chief Maj. Gen. Nadav Padan said. “We will pursue them and settle the score with this cell.”

Padan was referring to a shooting Thursday that claimed the lives of two soldiers and injured two others, and Sunday night’s shooting at the West Bank community of Ofra, in which a pregnant woman and six others were injured. The woman’s baby died after being delivered by emergency C-section.

“There will no hiding place for the attackers in all of Judea and Samaria,” Padan said, referring to the West Bank. “The IDF will continue to hunt them. Following the attack, we are increasing forces, protecting the roads and settlements, and expanding the efforts to thwart terror.”

On Wednesday night, Israeli security forces arrested four suspects in the Ofra shooting and killed a fifth suspect, Salih Omar Barghouti, as he attempted to escape. After his death, Hamas claimed Barghouti as a member. On Thursday, Israeli authorities acknowledged that more suspects in the Ofra shooting may still be at large.

In a separate operation overnight Wednesday, Israeli forces killed Ashraf Na’alowa, suspected of murdering two co-workers at the Barkan Industrial Park in October.

Among the security forces fighting terror in Israel, is YAMAM — a Hebrew acronym for “special police unit.”

In November, journalist Adam Ciralsky profiled YAMAM for Vanity Fair magazine. While Ciralsky described YAMAM as Israel’s “national counterterror A-team,” he also noted that the unit has “devised new methodologies for responding to terrorist incidents and mass shootings, which it is sharing with its counterparts across the globe.”

“YAMAM’s primary focus,” Ciralsky wrote, “involves foiling terror plots, engaging militants during attacks, combating crime syndicates, and blunting border incursions.”

[Photo: Arutz Sheva TV / YouTube ]