Zahar’s call comes after numerous attacks on Palestinians were reported in the West Bank Friday as Israeli troops searched for the suspected Palestinian killers of a Jewish settler couple shot in front of their young children. The wounded woman was rescued and appeared to be in serious condition.
Jerusalem police chief Moshe Edri said the Palestinian “stabbed an Israeli man, his wife and the toddler” multiple times in an alleyway before stabbing another man.
The attacker in the earlier stabbing has been identified at Mohannad Halabi, 19, a Palestinian law student living near Ramallah and studying at Al Quds University.
His remarks came after Islamic Jihad issued a statement that hailed the attack and said it was in response to Israeli “terrorist crimes” against Palestinians.
Violence has risen in East Jerusalem and West Bank in current weeks.
Hamas welcomed that attack as well, but no Palestinian group immediately claimed responsibility for it. Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas has not commented on the latest attacks. The military have deployed four battalions across the West Bank as the government of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu vowed to hunt down the attackers, who fled the scene of Thursday night’s attack. The victim was injured.
Worship at the sensitive Al-Aqsa mosque compound will be restricted to Old City residents and Israeli citizens of Palestinian origin, and limited to men aged 50 and above.
The Jewish Sukkot Holiday, lasting eight-days, started last Sunday and has been going on all week. Revelers in Nablus, near the site of the shooting, set off fireworks, he said, adding that Palestinians on social media networks were “ecstatic” about the killings.
The soldiers did nothing to stop the settler attacks, instead choosing to shoot tear gas, rubber bullets – and reportedly live ammunition – against the Palestinians defending their property. The military said significant progress toward catching the assailants has been made. Peace talks collapsed in 2014.
Though not at the levels of previous Palestinian uprisings, or “Intifadas”, it has triggered concerns of a wider escalation. Police returned fire and fatally shot him, according to Samri.
Police said they were forced to raid the compound to stop rioters from disrupting visits by non-Muslims.
A deadly terror attack in Jerusalem’s Old City leaves two Israelis dead.
Netanyahu has said repeatedly he is committed to the status quo there.