JERUSALEM (Jun. 28)
Israeli authorities say they will step up counterterrorism measures in response to a renewed wave of Palestinian terrorism that has left three Israelis dead and two injured since last week’s elections.
The latest incidents occurred over the weekend, when two Israelis were stabbed in separate attacks: one in Hebron and the other in the Jordan Valley settlement of Ro’i.
A Jewish resident of Hebron was slightly hurt in the attack. The resident of Ro’i suffered medium wounds.
Last Thursday, two Israelis were brutally stabbed by Arab assailants in their Gaza Strip meat-packing plant. And an Israel Defense Force soldier died the same day in a gun battle with Palestinians in the West Bank village of Arraba.
Security officials have not established a direct link between the new wave of terrorism and the recent elections.
They explained the latest upsurge by pointing out that stabbing attacks tend to come in waves.
Palestinian sources in the territories said that heads of the Palestinian community ordered activists to refrain from terrorist attacks in the 10 days prior to the elections, in order not to play into the hands of the Likud, as had happened in the previous elections.
Two days before the 1988 elections, a woman and her three children were burned to death in a firebombing of a bus near Jericho.
The incident in Hebron occurred Saturday morning, when a young Arab woman stabbed Hillel Horwitz, 32, as he came out of the Hadassah building following Sabbath prayers. Horwitz was hospitalized at the Hadassah Medical Center in Jerusalem, suffering light wounds.
The security forces conducted a wide search for the attacker, with no immediate results.
Following the stabbing, Jewish settlers rioted through the town, smashing the window shields of at least 10 cars owned by Arabs.
Later Saturday, an Arab worker stabbed his employer in the Ro’i settlement in the Jordan Valley, while they were packing grapes.
Avi Aglamaz, 30, was rushed by helicopter to the Hadassah Medical Center in Jerusalem, suffering serious wounds.
The victims of last week’s attack in the Gaza Strip were identified as Moshe Bino, 49, of Ashkelon and Ami Salzman, 59, of Ness Ziona, co-managers of the A1 Kuba meat-packing plant.