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Palestinian youth detained in East Jerusalem for alleged attack, 4 others detained in Israel

Oct. 21, 2016 10:31 A.M. (Updated: Oct. 24, 2016 3:33 P.M.)
BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) -- Israeli forces Thursday detained a Palestinian youth from the occupied East Jerusalem neighborhood of Silwan accused of ramming two Israelis with his motorcycle on Wednesday, while Israeli media reported that four Palestinians had been detained last month for allegedly planning a large-scale attack in Beersheba in southern Israel.

Hebrew-language media reported that a Palestinian youth accused of intentionally ramming his motorcycle into two Israelis was prosecuted in an Israeli court on Thursday. Following the incident, the Palestinian had fought with the Israelis, leading the police to open an investigation.

While the Israeli police had initially considered the incident an accident, after allegedly finding a knife in the premises that belonged to the Palestinian, Israeli police detained the youth under suspicions that the accident may have been a planned attack. However, it remained unclear how Israeli police connected the knife to the youth.

The incident left two Israelis with minor injuries.

An Israeli police spokesperson was not immediately available for comment.

Meanwhile, according to Israeli media, Israel’s internal security agency the Shin Bet had detained four Palestinians last month who were allegedly planning a large-scale attack in Israel. The reports were made public on Thursday.

The four were detained on September 21, and were identified by Israeli media as Mahmoud Yousef Hasin Abu Taha from Khan Yunis in the southern Gaza Strip, 39-year-old Ahmad Taysir Abd al-Rahman Abu Taha, 55-year-old Shafik Hamad Ahmad Abu Taha, also from Gaza, and 40-year-old Hani Abu Amra from a Palestinian Bedouin village in the Negev of southern Israel.

According to Israeli media, the four had planned to throw grenades into a crowd of dancers at an event hall, while using weapons they would store in trash cans at the event. They had also reportedly considered “detonating pipe bombs concealed under the dining tables.”

The four were detained before they were able to carry through with the attack. They are standing trial for “establishing contact with a foreign agent, divulging intelligence to enemies, fraud, residing in Israel without legal documentation and activities with unlawful organizations.”

Israeli media also reported that the four had begun to collect funds in order to plan the abduction of an Israeli soldier at a bus station in order to use in future prisoner release negotiations with Israeli authorities.

Mahmoud Abu Taha

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