The Israel Security Agency (Shin Bet) has arrested several Palestinians in connection with Saturday night’s deadly terrorist attack in Tel Aviv.
The attack began when two municipal patrol officers tried to question a suspicious man at the corner of Montefiore and Allenby streets. He ignored their overtures, drew a handgun and opened fire on them, hitting one, later identified as 42-year-old Chen Amir.
The second guard then chased after the terrorist, shooting and killing him.
The terrorist was identified as Kamel Abu Bakr, 22, from Rummanah, near Jenin in northern Samaria. According to the Shin Bet, Abu Bakr was a member of the Palestinian Islamic Jihad terrorist group and had been hiding in the Jenin refugee camp for the past six months.
Hanan Peretz, the head of the inspector’s unit in the Tel Aviv Municipality, said on Sunday that Amir had “blocked the terrorist with his body,” adding that the two patrolmen prevented a bloodbath.
Amir was evacuated to nearby Ichilov Hospital in critical condition, where he eventually succumbed to his wounds.
“Chen … was killed while physically preventing a larger attack and in his death saved many lives,” read a statement from the hospital. He is survived by his wife and three daughters,” Peretz said.
On Sunday, Amir’s widow eulogized him as “the most amazing person in the world, an amazing husband and a wonderful father.”
“I always knew he’d be the first to [engage a terrorist],” Vered Amir told journalists outside the family home in Bat Yam, south of Tel Aviv. “In all the previous terrorist attacks, he was always the first to run and search and help. He has a closet full of certificates of appreciation. He saved lives, he saved people.”
Adia, Amir’s sister, said, “He was a hero, ready to sacrifice his life to protect his fellow officers and every person on the street, without making any distinction between one person and another.
“We know that Chen took the bullets, that he and the patrolman took action. Both of them noticed something was off and they approached. He was very seriously injured and there wasn’t much to do. The injury was fatal,” added Adia.
Amir’s organs will save and improve the lives of some 50 chronic patients, medical officials at Sheba Medical Center (Tel Hashomer) in Ramat Gan said on Sunday.
“The tissue donation is a mixture of personal tragedy with hope,” noted Dr. Ayelet Di Segni, the head of Sheba’s tissue bank, explaining that Amir’s family had decided to donate his bones, tendons, corneas and skin.
On Sunday morning, friends and co-workers from the municipal patrol unit gathered at the site of the attack, where they laid flowers at a makeshift memorial set up in commemoration of Amir.
The funeral was set to take place at 6:30 p.m. on Sunday at Kibbutz Re’im in the western Negev.