Netanyahu slams Abbas for not condemning Beit El shooting

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu slammed Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas on Sunday for failing to condemn the shooting attack carried out earlier in the day by a PA security officer at a checkpoint near Beit El in Samaria.

“Abbas has not condemned this attack that was carried out by one of his men,” Netanyahu said. “The terrorist received a salary from the PA, which is responsible for the incitement that is fueling terrorism against Israel. I demand that the international community stop its hypocrisy and do everything it its power to pressure the Palestinian Authority to stop its incitement against Israel.”

Three Israeli soldiers were wounded, one of them seriously, when 29-year-old Amjad Sukari emerged from a vehicle and opened fire at them with a pistol. A platoon commander from the Givati Brigade’s Shaked Battalion returned fire, killing Sukari.

Sukari, a married father of four from the village of Jama’in in the Shechem region, worked as a bodyguard and driver for the PA attorney general in Ramallah.

All three wounded soldiers were transported to hospitals in Jerusalem for treatment.

Shortly before the attack, Sukari wrote on Facebook, “There is nothing worth living for as long as the occupation hangs over us.” The post included a photo Sukari took of himself in his car on his way to carry out the attack.

The Hamas terrorist group praised the attack and a Hamas spokesman in Qatar called on other members of the PA security forces to “emulate the heroic action of the shahid [martyr] Sukari.”

Sunday’s attack was the second in the ongoing wave of terrorism to have been conducted by a member of the PA security forces. In early December, a PA intelligence officer wounded two Israelis in shooting attack at the Hizma checkpoint northeast of Jerusalem.

In recent weeks, the IDF has identified a downward trend in the number of attacks and violent disturbances in Judea and Samaria. Yet at the same time, the attacks that have taken place have been “higher quality,” including shooting attacks and infiltrations of communities in Judea and Samaria. As things stand, the IDF believes the wave of Palestinian terrorism will continue in the coming months.