Shin Bet Arrests Palestinian Suspected of Killing Israeli Soldier in West Bank

Shin Bet said that they had arrested Nizmi Abu Bakr, suspected of killing Staff Sgt. Amit Ben Ygal by dropping a stone on his head, several weeks earlier

Hagar Shezaf
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Staff Sgt. Amit Ben Ygal.
Staff Sgt. Amit Ben Ygal.Credit: Amit Ben Ygal's Facebook account
Hagar Shezaf

The Shin Bet cleared for publication Sunday that they arrested a Palestinian man from the West Bank who is suspected of killing a soldier by throwing a rock at him in May. 

Nizmi Abu Bakr, 49, was arrested and investigated by the Shin Bet security service for several weeks, and an indictment will be filed against him in a military court, according to a statement by the Shin Bet security service.

The suspect in the soldier's killing, Nazmi Abu Baker, from the West Bank village of Ya'bad. Credit: Israel Defense Forces Spokesperson

Twenty-one year old Staff Sgt. Amit Ben Ygal was killed by a stone dropped on his head during an operation to arrest Palestinians in the West Bank village of Y'abad on May 12.

According to the Shin Bet statement, Abu Bakr lives in that building, and was arrested shortly after the incident. 

The soldier's father, Baruch Ben Ygal, said he had been waiting for the news of an arrest. "I am thankful that the person who did this was caught and confessed," he said. 

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu praised the Israeli army and Shin Bet for "capturing the despicable murderer," and said he had ordered the army to demolish Abu Bakr's house. Defense Minister Benny Gantz said he hopes that the "capture of the heinous terrorist will console Amit's parents."

At around 4 A.M., the military said, a unit from the Golani Brigade arrived at the town of Ya'bad, near Jenin, to arrest four Palestinians – two suspected of involvement in a terrorist organization, and two suspected of throwing stones. The military said Ben Ygal was wearing a helmet.

A resident of the town told Haaretz that the incident occurred in the early morning when many residents were awake because of Ramadan. Clashes erupted after the troops arrived at the town.

An eyewitness in the town said Israeli troops arrested 11 people, all members of the same family, after the incident. 

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