9 suspected Jewish extremists arrested after second arson death


JERUSALEM (JTA) — Nine suspected Jewish extremists in two West Bank outposts were arrested a day after the death of a Palestinian man whose home was firebombed more than a week ago.

Saad Dawabsheh, 31, died Saturday morning from injuries sustained in the July 31 firebombing in the Palestinian West Bank village of Duma. His 18-month-old infant son, Ali, was killed in the attack. His wife, Reham, 27, remains on a respirator in critical condition. Their son Ahmed, 4, was disconnected recently from a respirator and recognized the people around him, according to reports.

Hundreds attended Dawabsheh’s funeral on Saturday morning. Following the funeral, Palestinian demonstrators and Israeli soldiers clashed near the village. Palestinian demonstrators burned tires on the road near the village and threw rocks at the soldiers, who did not respond, according to reports.

“I express deep sorrow over the death of Saad Dawabsheh.” Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said in a statement issued Saturday night. “When I visited family members in hospital last week, I promised that we would use all the tools at our disposal to apprehend the murderers and deal with them to the fullest extent of the law and this is what we are doing.”

He added: “We will not countenance terrorism of any kind.”

Hamas, the terrorist organization that runs Gaza, called Dawabsheh a “Hamas son” and vowed revenge.

The Palestinian Authority called on the international community to hold Israel accountable for the violence against West Bank Palestinians and for their protection.

On Sunday morning, Israel’s Shin Bet security service and the Israel Police carried out the nine arrests in the northern West Bank as part of the investigation into the Duma firebombing. Two arrests were made at the Adei Ad outpost located near Duma. Seven arrests were made at the Baladim outpost near the Kochav Hashachar settlement.

Also Sunday, Defense Minister Moshe Yaalon issued administrative detention orders for two suspected Jewish extremists. Meir Ettinger and Evyatar Slonim, who were arrested last week, could remain in custody for up to six months without a hearing or charges. Ettinger is the grandson of Meir Kahane, the slain Jewish extremist whose Kach political party was outlawed in Israel.

A third suspected extremist, Mordechai Meyer, already is under an administrative detention order. Meyer is believed to have been involved in arson attacks on two churches.

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