Three Palestinian construction workers and one West Bank Bedouin were stabbed Friday morning in the southern city of Dimona by a Jewish assailant, in a suspected revenge attack that comes after a string of terror attacks and clashes in Israel and the West Bank. The suspected attacker was arrested on the scene, after first stabbing the Bedouin.
Shortly thereafter, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu strongly condemned the attack, saying violence against innocent Arabs is unacceptable. "Israel is a country of law and order," he said. "We bring anyone to justice who commits acts of violence, on either side, Jew or Arab."
Two victims of the stabbing were moderately wounded, while the other two suffered light wounds. One victim, a 35-year-old man, sustained slightly deeper wounds than the other two men in their 50s. Shortly beforehand, the Bedouin man, who works for the municipality, was stabbed and incurred moderate wounded.
The Bedouin man, whose identity is still unknown and apparently hails from the West Bank, was stabbed in the street by an Israeli man who immediately escaped, initial reports indicated. At 8:58 Friday morning, MDA received reports of a young man being stabbed in the back.
"Many people came to the nearby shopping center," explained an MDA medic, Orgad Cohen, who treated the first wounded man "A young worker, maybe 20-years-old, was lying on the pavement. He was fully conscious, but suffering from a stab wound to his upper body. The minute we saw him, we put him in an ambulance, provided medical treatment, and then took him to the hospital."
About 45 minutes later, the three Palestinian men were stabbed, and the assailant was arrested on the scene. All four were taken to Sokora Hospital for treatment.
A Jewish resident of the town was arrested on suspicion of involvement in the incident.
This comes on the heels of Thursday's violence where eight Israelis were wounded, two of them seriously, in four different stabbing attacks around the country Thursday. At least 6 Palestinians were also wounded in clashes with the IDF, and one was killed in East Jerusalem.
Last night in Jerusalem, right wing activists protested through the streets yelling 'Death to the Arabs,' and similar slogans. For members, including Bentzi Gopstein, head of the far right Lehava organization, were arrested, but were released early Friday morning.
In response to the most recent wave of violence, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu ordered that politicians – Jewish and Arab alike – be barred from visiting the Temple Mount at this time. "We do not need more matches to set the ground afire. We will take aggressive measures against the Islamic Movement in Israel and against other inciters. Nobody will be immune," he said in a press conference last night.
The police put metal detectors in and around Jerusalem's Old City yesterday to try to quell violence within it's walls. Police in the area are currently on high alert surrounding Friday prayers at Al-Aqsa Mosque.
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