Norman Bentwich, Attorney General of Palestine, and highest Jewish official in the Palestine Governent, was shot and wounded while passing through the corridor of the Government offices yesterday, by a young Arab employed as a civilian messenger in the Department of Police and Prisons.
Mr. Bentwich was wounded in the leg, after being shot at three times. He was at first rushed home and later removed to the Government Hospital. Dr. MacQueen, of the Government Health Department, is attending the Attorney General.
Dr. Yaski, head of the Hadassah in Palestine, who visited Mr. Bentwich at the hospital, informed the correspondent of the Jewish Telegraphic Agency that the bullet, which had (Continued on Page 4)
lodged under the skin of the calf, was easily removable and there is no danger if no infection develops.
The assailant, Abdul Ghani Tabek, of Kebatya, a village near Jenin, was immediately arrested on the spot. The prisoner was found to have been wounded in the thigh. Whether the wound was deliberately self-inflicted or accidental has not been determined. The examination of the Arab is being personally conducted by A. S. Mavrogordato, Inspector General of Jerusalem.
Surrounded by his family at the hospital, Mr. Bentwich was disposed to make light of the occurrence. According to the story he told Dr. Yaski, he had just closed his office on the second floor of the Government building, when he saw his assailant, revolver in hand pointing at him. Rushing down the stairs when the first shot was fired, Bentwich said he heard two more shots fired, but was uncertain which hit him.
Immediately after the Bentwich shooting, an official communique was telephoned to the Jewish Telegraphic Agency, from the house of H. C. Luke, Chief Secretary of the Palestine Government. The communique declared: “Norman Bentwich, Attorney General of Palestine, was shot at this afternoon in the corridor of the Government Offices. Three shots were fired, one wounding him in the leg. His condition is not serious. The assailant’s name is Abdul Ghani Tabek of Kebatya, a village near Jenin. He is a young civilian messenger of the Department of Police and Prisons.”
Mr. Luke was among the many Government officials who visited Mr. Bentwich at the hospital.
The news of the attempted murder of Mr. Bentwich fell like a bombshell in the Jerusalem Jewish community, which in the last few months has been accustomed to every conceivable outrage.
Mr. Bentwich has for the past two months, since the outbreaks, been the target of Arab propaganda, Arab agitators demanding his dismissal from his post, on the ground that he is a Jew.
The attack on Mr. Bentwich follows upon the heels of the arrest of the Arab assailant of Dr. Ticho, noted Jewish occulist, who was identified by several witnesses as a post office employee. There is grim irony in the fact that of the two most recent victims of Arab murderous assaults, one should be a Jewish physician who healed thousands of Arabs, and the other a superior Government official who has watched Arab rights more jealously perhaps than those of his own people.
The arrest of the Bentwich and Ticho assailants has given rise to the belief that a hidden terrorist society (Continued on Page 8)
exists in Palestine, similar to the Sinn Fein.
The Archive of the Jewish Telegraphic Agency includes articles published from 1923 to 2008. Archive stories reflect the journalistic standards and practices of the time they were published.