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A 23-year-old Israeli Arab man said Friday that his assault of a Border Police officer the day before was an attempt to avenge the death of his cousin, who was killed by Border Police nearly two years ago.

Nadim Milham, a resident of the Wadi Ara town of Arara, told police he attempted to snatch the security officer's rifle, and planned to shoot him and and sell the weapon. He said his action came in reaction to the justice system's failure to hold the policeman who killed his cousin accountable for the shooting.

Milham's cousin was fatally shot in the back while security forces searched his house. The Border Police officer who opened fire is currently on trial for manslaughter.

Milham's lawyer, Sami Milham, said he would ask the court to send his client to a psychiatric evaluation because of suspected mental instability.

He said family members feel no need to avenge the death, despite alleged legal foot-dragging in the case.

"It is obvious to everyone that this was a stupid thing to do," the attorney said.