Two Palestinian brothers from Hebron were arrested last month in connection with a series of sniper attacks in the city late last year in which four Israelis were wounded, the Shin Bet security service announced on Monday.
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An Israel Defense Forces soldier was seriously wounded, another was lightly wounded and two Israeli youths were moderately wounded in the shootings.
The brothers are Nasser Badwi, 23, and Akram Badwi 33, from the Abu Sanina neighborhood. Nasser was taken into custody on January 9, The Shin Bet suspects that his brother committed another attack a week later in order to deflect suspicion from Nasser.
The two are suspected of at least five shooting attacks in Hebron, according to the Shin Bet statement. A home-made sniper's rifle and another home-made rifle were seized following the interrogation of the suspects.
The statement added that the suspects had used a makeshift silencer, which they learned to make on the Internet.
According to the Shin Bet, the brothers hid the sniper's rifle in a Hebron mosque, from where they took it to carry out the attacks. Their firing position was a building under construction that overlooked the Cave of the Patriarchs.
Their first attack was on a Friday in early November, when they fired on settlers going to prayers in the cave, wounding two of them. Nasser decided on the attack, the Shin Bet said, following the killing of an elderly woman from Hebron who had attempted a hit-and-run attack earlier the same day.
After the attack, the two attended a family wedding.
Three weeks later, Nasser fired on a group of soldiers, but only hit a parked car.
In January, Nasser saw a group of soldiers at the Cave of the Patriarchs and called his brother to join him. The two fired on the soldiers, seriously wounding a female cadet in an officers' course.
Later the same day, they fired at an IDF roadblock in the Hebron area, lightly wounding one of the soldiers.
From their interrogation it transpired that they had made additional attacks on the roadblock without the soldiers being aware of them.