Israeli Top Cop Says Probe of Collision in Gaza Not over

Israel’s top police official said this week that it was still unclear whether last week’s collision in the Gaza Strip between a Palestinian truck and an Israeli border police jeep was an accident or deliberate terror attack.

Police Commissioner Assaf Hefetz said Tuesday that even though he did not rule out the possibility that the incident could have been a traffic accident, Israeli security forces still maintained that it was a terrorist attack.

Israeli and Palestinian officials originally gave conflicting accounts of the March 29 incident.

According to the Israelis, an Israel Defense Force officer and a police officer were killed when a Palestinian truck driver veered into an Israeli army jeep that was part of a convoy traveling to the Jewish settlement of Netzarim in the Gaza Strip.

Witnesses said the driver jumped out of the truck and began shooting. Israeli soldiers returned fire, killing the driver, Israeli officials said.

An IDF inquiry into the incident last week concluded that the crash was a terror attack. The IDF statement was based on debriefings of witnesses, border police and soldiers who were in other vehicles in the convoy.

Palestine officials maintained that the collision was an accident and that the Israelis had planted a weapon next to the dead driver.

Palestinian police Tuesday handed over the truck that was involved in the crash as Israeli traffic investigators continued their attempts to determine the background of the collision.

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