1,500 Attend Funeral of Israeli Murdered in West Bank Attack

19-year-old Yehuda Guetta is being interred in Jerusalem's Givat Shaul cemetery after succumbing to his wounds on Wednesday

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הלווייתו של גואטה, היום בהר המנוחות
Yehuda Guetta's funeral, todayCredit: Ohad Zwigenberg
Aaron Rabinowitz
Aaron Rabinowitz

Around 1,500 people paid their respects to Yehuda Guetta at his funeral in Jerusalem's Givat Shaul cemetery on Thursday, after the 19-year-old was shot by a Palestinian at Tapuah Junction in the West Bank. 

The drive-by shooting at Tapuah junction on Sunday left three 19-year-old students from Itamar Gevoha Yeshiva injured. Guetta, who was critically wounded, succumbed to his wounds on Wednesday night at Beilinson Hospital in Petah Tikva. 

Yehuda Guetta's funeral Credit: Ohad Zwigenberg

The two others - Benaya Peretz, 19, from Beit She’an and Amichai  Chala, 19, from Safed - were lightly and seriously injured respectively.

The suspected shooter, who was identified as Muntassir Shalabi on Tuesday, was captured in a joint operation on Wednesday by the Shin Bet security service, Israeli military and Israel Police, according to Israel Defense Forces. Shalabi is also a U.S. citizen.

Jonathan Pollard, the American naval intelligence analyst who was convicted of spying for Israel and immigrated to Israel in December, was among those attending the funeral.

Jonathan Pollard also attended the funeralCredit: Ohad Zwigenberg

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu extended his condolences on Wednesday, saying "Israel's long arm will reach anyone who hurts its citizen." He also commended Israeli security forces for capturing Shalabi. 

One West Bank resident who identified the shooter said that Shalabi recently returned from the United States, where he had lived for several years, and that he was in dire economic straits after rapidly losing money through gambling.

Some of his family members denied his involvement in the shooting, which took place at Tapuah Junction on Sunday.

On Tuesday, the Israeli army said that it had arrested several Palestinians who are suspected of assisting the perpetrators after they fled the scene, but could not confirm their involvement in attack.

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