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Palestinian freed in Shalit swap charged in Passover murder

JERUSALEM (JTA) — One of two West Bank Palestinians charged in the fatal shooting of an Israeli police official was released in the Gilad Shalit prisoner exchange.

The father and son were arrested last month according to a gag order lifted Monday, the same day they were charged.

On Passover eve, April 14, gunman firing at civilian vehicles traveling near Hebron killed Police Chief Superintendent Baruch Mizrachi. The attack also critically injured his wife and wounded a child traveling in a second car. The shooters fled the scene.

One of the suspects is Ziad Awad, 42, of the Idhna village, a Hamas operative who has been jailed previously for the murder of Palestinians who were believed to be cooperating with Israeli security forces and released in the 2011  Shalit prisoner exchange. His son, Az Al-Adin Hasan Awad, 18, has admitted under questioning that his father​ had shared with him his ​intentions to execute a terror attack against Israelis on Passover.

Ziad Awad told his son, according to the IDF, that “according to the Islamic religion, those who kill Jews go to heaven.” The son led police to the weapon used in the attack.

Israel’s Cabinet ruled that Awad’s home will be demolished, if it is approved by Israel’s Supreme Court.

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