Three Israelis were killed Friday night in the West Bank settlement of Halamish, after a Palestinian assailant broke into a family home, stabbing them to death and leaving another person in serious medical condition.
According to initial reports, the victims were a man in his 40s, a man in his 60s and a woman in her 40s. The alleged attacker has been named as Omar Al-Abed, a 19-year-old from a nearby Palestinian town who climbed over the settlement’s fence and breached a window in the victims’ home.
He was shot at the scene by an Israel Defense Forces soldier, but it was not immediately known whether he had been killed at night. Palestinian media has reported that before the alleged murder, al-Abed had published a status about the Dome of the Rock and al-Aqsa mosque, the Muslim holy sites in Jerusalem that have stirred tensions in recent weeks.
After a terror attack last week that took the lives of two Israeli policewoman, the Israeli authorities moved to place new security restrictions on the site, spurring long-simmering allegations that Israel was trying to stamp out Muslim presence in the area. Stabbing attacks have been common since last summer, in a wave of assaults that has been commonly described as the “knife intifada.”