Sunday, October 19, 2014

19-Oct-14: Human bomb intercepted by IDF near Jenin? [UPDATE: He was not armed]

A news flash from the Jerusalem Post, the substance of which is unconfirmed as we write this (Sunday, 12:20 pm):
Defense Ministry personnel arrested a suspicious Palestinian at the Jalameh crossing near Jenin in the West Bank on Sunday. Police sappers were on the scene checking if a device that the suspect was wearing on his person is an explosive device.
Times of Israel has more:
Israeli security forces arrested a Palestinian man Sunday near the northern West Bank city of Jenin on suspicion that he was planning to carry out a suicide bombing attack in an Israeli city across the Green Line. The man was apprehended at a checkpoint next to the Palestinian town of Jalameh on the northern border of the West Bank, after security forces noticed what appeared to be an explosive vest strapped to his torso, Israel Radio reported. Sappers were attempting to dismantle the device while police interrogated the man at a facility adjacent to the checkpoint, according to the report. The checkpoint was closed to traffic and security personnel were searching the area for additional explosives.
And here's an update as of 2:30 pm Israel time, Sunday:
The Jalama crossing north of Jenin was closed after a Palestinian wearing a suspected explosive device arrived at the area. Investigators from the Ministry of Defense, responsible for the crossing, examined the suspect, while police dealt with the device. However, it was eventually revealed that the man was in fact unarmed. [Israel National News]
Sidenote: While this may read like a strange narrative for those unfamiliar with daily life here and the phenomenon of "hefetz hashud" (Hebrew for suspicious object) - and the turmoil that follows - this kind of thing happens often. Most people here realize being constantly alert implies being wrong some or even much of the time, which works out far better than failing to identify those not-quite-sure-about-them dangers. But beware of media sources that report suspicions as certainties.

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