update deskIsrael-Palestinian Conflict

Netanyahu, Gallant accuse Iran of masterminding recent ‘terror wave’

"We are in the midst of a terror onslaught that is being encouraged, directed and financed by Iran and its proxies," said Netanyahu.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Yoav Gallant at the site of a terrorist attack in the South Hebron Hills in Judea, Aug. 21, 2023. Credit: PMO.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Yoav Gallant at the site of a terrorist attack in the South Hebron Hills in Judea, Aug. 21, 2023. Credit: PMO.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Yoav Gallant charged the Islamic Republic of Iran on Monday evening with orchestrating the most recent surge in Palestinian terrorism, which saw three Israelis killed and one seriously wounded in just under 72 hours.

“We are in the midst of a terror onslaught that is being encouraged, directed and financed by Iran and its proxies,” said Netanyahu following a situational assessment at the site of one of the attacks near Hebron in Judea.

“It is important to understand the significant change that is taking place on the ground; it is related to Iranian funding and to the proliferation of weapons under the Iranian directive. Iran seeks every means to harm the citizens of Israel,” added Gallant, warning Tehran that “all options are on the table.”

On Monday morning, a 40-year-old Israeli woman was killed and a 39-year-old man was seriously wounded in a terrorist shooting in the Hebron Hills.

The slain woman was identified as Batsheva Nigri, a kindergarten teacher and mother of three from Beit Hagai, an Israeli community in the South Hebron Hills. The other victim, identified as Aryeh Gottlieb, was evacuated to Soroka Medical Center in Beersheva.

Nigri’s young daughter, who was in the back seat of the car at the time of the attack, was not injured. The victims’ vehicle was hit by at least 22 rounds with another three bullets impacting nearby, according to a preliminary military probe.

In a statement, the Al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades—an armed “militia” of Palestinian Authority leader Mahmoud Abbas’s Fatah faction—claimed responsibility for the attack.

Two days earlier, a Palestinian terrorist shot and killed two Israelis in Huwara, located just outside Nablus (Shechem) in Samaria. Ashdod residents Silas Nigrekar, 60, and his son, Aviad Nir, 28, were shot at point-blank range at a car wash in the Palestinian village.

While Border Police officers have apprehended a suspected accomplice in the terror attack, the Israel Defense Forces was continuing to search for the shooter.

The military said it was boosting security forces in Judea and Samaria following the attacks—deploying an additional infantry battalion and two companies. That will raise the number of battalions in Judea and Samaria to 23.

The reinforcements will assist in the search for the Hebron-area suspects, as well as the gunman who killed the father and son in Huwara. The soldiers will also be deployed to guard duty.

OC Central Command Maj. Gen. Yehuda Fox on Monday afternoon declared that Israel is “in the middle of an escalation, a terror wave, the likes of which we have not seen in a long time,” adding that “the IDF and security forces are operating daily in every area, to foil terror.

“We will chase down our enemies in Huwara and Hebron, and in any other place,” vowed Fox.

Checkpoints and roadblocks

Meanwhile, Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu, together with Military Secretary Maj. Gen. Avi Gil, hosted opposition leader Yair Lapid at the Prime Minister’s Office in Jerusalem on Monday for a pre-scheduled security briefing.

At the same time, a Security Cabinet meeting scheduled for Sept. 10 has been moved forward to next week in light of the situation.

National Security Minister Itamar Ben-Gvir intends to propose a series of measures including placing closures on Palestinian Authority cities, denying Israeli work permits to Palestinian Arabs, placing checkpoints and roadblocks in Judea and Samaria, and resuming the policy of targeted killings of terrorist leaders.

So far in 2023, Palestinian terrorists have killed 35 people (34 Israelis and an Italian tourist) in Israel and committed almost 200 shooting attacks in Judea and Samaria.

You have read 3 articles this month.
Register to receive full access to JNS.

Just before you scroll on...

Israel is at war. JNS is combating the stream of misinformation on Israel with real, honest and factual reporting. In order to deliver this in-depth, unbiased coverage of Israel and the Jewish world, we rely on readers like you. The support you provide allows our journalists to deliver the truth, free from bias and hidden agendas. Can we count on your support? Every contribution, big or small, helps JNS.org remain a trusted source of news you can rely on.

Become a part of our mission by donating today
Topics
Comments
Thank you. You are a loyal JNS Reader.
You have read more than 10 articles this month.
Please register for full access to continue reading and post comments.
Never miss a thing
Get the best stories faster with JNS breaking news updates