Paris: March 30. (Cinktank.com) –
Israeli security forces on Wednesday arrested four relatives of the perpetrator of Tuesday’s bomb attack in the Israeli city of Bnei Brak, outside Tel Aviv, as part of an operation carried out in the West Bank city of Jabad.
According to the Israeli newspaper “Haaretz”, the operation resulted in the arrest of twenty people, while the security forces carry out an analysis of the house of the aggressor’s family, identified as Diaa Hamarshe, for its possible demolition.
Hamarshe’s father, Ahmad, said he was shocked by what happened. “I had no idea something like this could happen. Diaa worked with me in the tobacco trade and had no connection to any political or military activity,” he said, before denying that his son had any links to Fatah or other Palestinian groups or formations.
The Shin Bet and Israeli police believe the attacker obtained the assault rifle used in the attack from Israeli territory after crossing the separation barrier into the West Bank. They are trying to find out if he was helped by Israeli citizens or if he bought the weapon illegally.
Investigations also indicate that Hamarshe worked in Bnei Brak and was familiar with the area. The man was arrested in 2013 for security violations and served a six-month prison sentence. During this period he was linked to Fatah, although Israeli authorities do not consider the attack to be linked to the group.
In this sense, the Israeli authorities believe that Hamarshe was inspired by the attacks perpetrated in recent days in Beersheba and Hadera, which left at least six dead, without the support of any organization. So far, no group has claimed responsibility for the attack.
Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett said Tuesday night that the country was “facing a wave of Arab terrorism.” “The security forces are working. We will fight terrorism with persistence, diligence and an iron fist,” he said. “They’re not going to move us from here, we’re going to win,” he said.
For his part, the president of the Palestinian Authority, Mahmoud Abbas, condemned the Bnei Brak attack and said that the killing of Palestinian and Israeli civilians “will only make the situation even worse”, while the Islamic Resistance (Hamas) and Jihad Islamic applauded the attack, without claiming responsibility.