Tuesday, August 18, 2020

18-Aug-20: An Arab-on-Israeli knifing in Jerusalem's Old City and a dead assailant

Screen cap from the Israel Police video report [here]
The general sense of fury being projected by a wounded and failed Palestinian Authority leadership in the wake of Israel's suddenly open 'normalized' relationship with the United Arab Emirates received its depressingly predictable expression last night.

Here in Jerusalem, near Lion's Gate (שער האריות) in the Old City at around 8:40 pm Monday night, shortly before Muslim evening prayers and close to the Bab Huta entrance (one of several) to the Temple Mount, an attacker wearing a protective face mask launched an explosive knifing attack. His victim was a 19 year old armed Israeli security officer who came out of it with moderate injuries but alive and recovering.

The attacker was almost immediately shot by security personnel and died of his injuries. Palestinian Arab news reports like this one predictably say the young Arrab was 'executed'.

The security camera video [here] makes plain the usual procedure: young Arab male, walking along one of the Old City paths, lunges without warning towards a security forces member standing guard to protect the peace, whips a knife out of his clothing. Thrusts a hand holding the weapon towards the upper body of the Israel, causing what undoubtedly would be the first of several lethal wounds if no one stops him. But he is stopped by the shots of another alert Israel Border Guard officer and falls to the ground.

Arabic-language news reports (like this one from the official Palestinian Press Agency, archived here) say (translated from the Arabic original) "the Israeli occupation forces executed a Palestinian youth"that "the martyr... is from the Shuafat refugee camp in Jerusalem" and "he is 30 years old".

The murderous assault comes against the background of what a Times of Israel report calls "a general lull in terror activity in the capital, which had not seen a stabbing attack in nearly three months".

The teenage border guard, presumably in the midst of his compulsory national service, was taken to hospital (Yediot Aharonot says Shaarei Zedek; Times of Israel reports Hadassah Mount Scopus Medical Center) for emergency treatment. Initial first aid was given at the site by Magen David Adom medics. The hospital reports that he sustained stab wounds to the chest and is "stable and fully conscious”.

Haaretz quotes Israel Police announcing that the Temple Mount gates were closed immediately after the knifing. Social media reports (like this) say that in the Shuafat neighborhood of north Jerusalem there were clashes in the hours that followed between Israel Police and locals.

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