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Homemade rocket found in Jerusalem field

The Shin Bet suspects the would-be terrorist learned about such projectiles on the internet.

The remnants of a Gazan rocket fired into southern Israel. Photo by Ronit Minaker.
The remnants of a Gazan rocket fired into southern Israel. Photo by Ronit Minaker.

The Israel Security Agency, or Shin Bet, arrested a Palestinian Arab after finding a rocket in an open field in an eastern section of Jerusalem about a month ago.

Abdel Alhakim Buatna, a resident of Ajjul, north of Ramallah, was arrested on suspicion of intending to fire the rocket at Israelis during this year’s Jerusalem Day flag parade in May, Channel 12 reported on Sunday.

It is believed that Buatna tried to build explosive rockets after learning about their production through the internet, but due to his inexperience and their poor quality he was unable to launch them.

Tens of thousands of Israeli participate in the annual flag march each year, which winds through the Muslim Quarter of the Old City of Jerusalem and to the Western Wall plaza. The march celebrates the unification of the city during the 1967 Six-Day War.

Several terrorist groups issued threats leading up to the celebration. An official from the Palestinian Authority said Israel is “playing with fire.” Salah al-Bardawil, a member of the Hamas political bureau, warned that “the march of the Zionist flags will not pass and the response will inevitably come.”

While the Shin Bet investigation found that the suspect acted alone, recent reports show that Palestinian terrorist groups are attempting to fire rockets at Israelis from Judea and Samaria. 

On May 25, the IDF found a “homemade” rocket launcher in Nazlet Zeid, near Jenin in northern Samaria. The rocket was aimed at the Jewish village of Shaked.

On May 9, Shin Bet chief Ronen Bar revealed that Israel had recently broken up a terrorist cell near Jenin that was in the process of producing rockets intended to be fired at Israeli targets from Samaria.

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