(Israel Hayom/Exclusive to JNS.org) A Hamas terrorist who killed a rabbi in a drive-by shooting attack earlier this month was killed during an IDF arrest raid near Hebron Tuesday.
In a victory for Israeli security and defense forces, a joint Shin Bet security agency, IDF and police investigation uncovered the Hamas terrorist cell responsible for the murder of Rabbi Michael Mark, who was murdered on July 1 as he traveled on Route 60 with his family near the settlement of Otniel.
Mark's wife, Hava, was seriously wounded in the attack and remains hospitalized. Two of his children were also hurt.
The investigation and concurrent manhunt culminated Tuesday night with the shooting of Mohammad al-Fakih, 29, in an exchange of fire in the Palestinian village of Surif, near Hebron. Fakih is believed to have perpetrated the shooting. The driver, Mohammed Majid Amaira, was arrested several weeks ago. A number of additional accomplices are also in custody.
The Islamist group Hamas identified Fakih as a member of its armed wing, the Izzedine al-Qassam Brigades. The house in which Fakih was hiding was damaged during the clash and then demolished by an Israeli bulldozer.
Over the course of the last month, intensive Israeli efforts were invested into capturing the cell behind the July 1 shooting attack. On Tuesday, IDF soldiers broke into Fakih's hideout, sustaining fire. After killing the terrorist, Israeli troops discovered ammunition, homemade grenades and an AK-47 assault rifle.