Three Israeli soldiers were wounded on Saturday night in a car-ramming attack near the village of Beit Ummar, located northwest of Hebron in Judea.
Magen David Adom emergency medical personnel treated the victims, all men in their 20s, before evacuating them to the hospital.
One of the soldiers was in serious condition, another was moderately and a third lightly injured, the Israeli military said in a statement.
The terrorist was “neutralized” by a fourth soldier, the statement added.
“Once again our enemies raised their heads and tried to murder Jews, just because they are Jews, and reminded us of the palpable threats against us,” said Yesha Council head and Gush Etzion Regional Council chairman Shlomo Ne’eman.
“It’s unfathomable how a religious holiday [Ramadan] turns into a holiday of terrorist attacks. We will continue to build and develop throughout Judea and Samaria and travel on Israel’s roads without fear. We wish those injured a speedy recovery and will pray for them,” he added.
Israeli forces remain on high alert during the month-long Ramadan holiday and following a series of terrorist attacks.
According to the Israel Police, on Friday, an Arab Israeli from the Bedouin town of Hura, near Beersheva, was shot dead in Jerusalem’s Old City after attempting to steal an officer’s weapon.
When officers stopped 26-year-old Mohammed Elasibi for questioning near the Temple Mount, he attacked one of them, grabbing their firearm and firing off two shots, according to police. According to Kan News, Elasibi was studying medicine in Romania, and had returned home for Ramadan.
“A suspect advanced towards the officers, who were at the Chain Gate [entrance to the Mount], and the officers questioned him. During the conversation, the terrorist rushed towards one of them, who struggled with his bare hands against the terrorist,” said Jerusalem District Police Cmdr. Doron Turgeman.
“The terrorist managed to pull out a policeman’s weapon and shoot in the direction of two police officers. The officers struggled with the suspect, recovered the weapon and neutralized the terrorist. This area is not covered by cameras when the gate is closed,” he added. The officers’ body cameras were not turned on at the time of the incident, according to Kan News.
While Elasibi’s family and witnesses dispute the police account, Israel Police Commissioner Yaakov Shabtai on Saturday night said he had “no doubt” about what took place.
“After hearing from the district commander and being privy to all the data regarding the incident, I have no doubt that this is a terrorist attack,” said Shabtai. “The picture here is very clear: This is an attack that was carried out against police officers who were operating at the gate of the Temple Mount in order to allow freedom of worship and maintain order and public safety.”
Shabtai noted that the event was nevertheless under investigation and that as a result, it was not possible to discuss all the details.
“We fully support the police officers and commanders who acted. We are in a very sensitive security period, with the police deployed widely throughout the country and working in an expanded format. The police are upright and do their job to the best of their abilities,” he said.
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