JERUSALEM (Sep. 24)
In a surprise development, police have detained three Israeli Arabs in connection with the shooting of a farmer working the fields of Moshav Gadish, in Lower Galilee.
Suspicion fell at first on a nearby village in the West Bank after Avraham Cohen, 32, was wounded Wednesday by gunfire from a passing car. He was admitted to Afula Hospital, where his condition was described as stable.
Police later traced the car and its owners to the village of Salim, within Israel’s pre-1967 borders, and arrested its owner and his two sons.
News of the arrests came as a surprise to inhabitants of the region, where Israeli Arabs are rarely involved in terror attacks. Salim, most of whose inhabitants work in nearby Afula, has a reputation for peaceful relations with its neighbors.
The attack came as Jerusalem reported several terror assaults over the last few days. Security sources attribute the escalation to the Hamas fundamentalist group, which opposes the peace negotiations currently taking place between Israel and the Palestinians.
A 33-year-old yeshiva student, Hanan Gol, was stabbed and slightly wounded Wednesday while walking through an Old City alley near the Jewish Quarter.
At the same time, in the western part of the city, Sima Kiwiti, 43, was stabbed and suffered a slight wound in her arm. She said she was assaulted by an Arab on emerging from her place of work at an old age home on Toviya Hefetz Street. Both attackers managed to escape.
Police, meanwhile, were holding a Palestinian in connection with the shooting death earlier this week of an Israeli border policeman in East Jerusalem.
A previous attack by Israeli Arab terrorists occurred last February at a military post in Galed, where three new recruits were hacked to death while sleeping. Four Israeli Arabs from a village in Wadi Ara are serving life terms for the killings.