Netanyahu: ‘All signs’ indicate Jerusalem terrorist inspired by ISIS
The terrorist who carried out the deadly truck ramming attack in Jerusalem on Sunday afternoon was apparently a supporter of Islamic State, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said.
Netanyahu made his comments at the scene of the attack, where he received a briefing along with Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman. Soon after visiting the site, he was scheduled to convene a meeting of the security cabinet.
“We know the identity of the attacker, and according to all the signs he is a supporter of Islamic State,” Netanyahu said.
Jerusalem Terror Attack: Footage of truck ramming into group of people in Armon Hanatziv, Jan. 8, 2017
Netanyahu said there may be a connection between this attack and similar attacks recently in France and Berlin. “We are fighting this plague, and we will defeat it,” he said.
The Security Cabinet, meeting in the wake of Sunday’s attack in Jerusalem, decided to approve administrative detention for people identifying with Islamic State.
The security cabinet also decided to destroy the home of the terrorist as soon as possible, reject family-reunification requests his family had filed for relatives in Gaza and the West Bank, and not to hand over the terrorist’s body to his family for burial.
During the meeting Netanyahu also directed the security forces to investigate reports that some people at the scene of the attack had praised it, and that if that indeed was the case, to bring them to court.
The terrorist, identified as Fadi al-Qanbar, came from the east Jerusalem neighborhood of Jebl Mukaber. Netanyahu announced that Jebl Mukaber has been cordoned off in light off the attack.”
“We will overcome this terror, just as we overcame other attacks,” he said. “There are a number of actions that we will not specify at this time, which we will have to take to ensure that incidents such as these do not recur.”
Also at the briefing, Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman charged that the truck-ramming attack was not fueled by the issue of Israeli settlements, rather by the mere fact that “we are Jews and we live here in Israel.”
“There was no other reason and no need to look for an excuse – not Jewish settlements and negotiations but an attack inspired by ISIS,” he said while visiting the scene of the attack that killed four IDF soldiers and wounded more than a dozen others.
“We will fight this terrorism with all tools at our disposal and I’m sure that will win,” he stressed.
Among the fatalities were three female soldiers and one male soldier all in their 20s. The terrorist was shot dead by security personnel at the scene. At least 13 others were wounded in the attack on a group of soldiers disembarking from a bus.
The Armon Hanatziv neighborhood abuts the Arab neighborhood of Jebl Mukaber. The area has been the scene of numerous attacks over the past 15 months.
Following a terror attack in which two people were killed by Jebl Mukaber residents in Armon Hanatziv in October 2015, a wall was temporarily erected separating the Arab and Jewish neighborhoods.
The wall was taken down shortly afterward following complaints from numerous human rights groups and left-wing politicians who condemned it as collective punishment that violated the rights of law-abiding Arab residents.
Jpost.com Staff and Anna Ahronheim contributed to this report.