Driver in West Bank Attack That Killed Yeshiva Head Rabbi Sentenced to Two Life Terms

The gunman in the case was killed in a shootout with IDF forces following the incident.

Yotam Berger
Yotam Berger
The Mark's family's car, center, following the shooting attack.
The Mark's family's car, center, following the shooting attack, July 1, 2017.Credit: Nasser Shiyoukhi / AP
Yotam Berger
Yotam Berger

An Israeli military court in the southern West Bank sentenced a Palestinian, Mohammed Ameira, to two consecutive life prison sentences on Wednesday after begin convicted of murder in a drive-by shooting attack in July of Rabbi Michael Mark. Ameira was also ordered to pay compensation of 250,000 shekels ($68,300).

In January, the court convicted Ameira of murder for his role in driving the vehicle that was used in the attack. He was also convicted of attempted murder of members of Mark's family and others.

Mark headed the hesder yeshiva in the West Bank settlement of Otniel, where army service and religious studies are combined. His wife, Chava, and children Tehila and Pedaya were seriously wounded in the attack. The family were on Highway 60 south of Hebron when they were passed by the vehicle driven by Ameira from which a gunman opened fire.

After the shooting, the terrorists managed to get away. At least 20 bullets, apparently fired from a Kalashnikov rifle, were found in the Mark's vehicle.

Ameira, 38, who is from the southern West Bank village of Dura, was arrested following the shooting and admitted under interrogation to driving the vehicle from which the shots were fired at the Mark family. The gunman in the incident, Mohammed Fakieh, was killed later in July in an exchange of gunfire with Israel Defense Force soldiers who came to Fakieh's home in the West Bank village of Tsurif.

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