Arab MK claims Be’er Sheva terrorist was innocent

MK Taleb Abu Arar (Joint List) claimed Wednesday that the Bedouin terrorist shot by security forces after perpetrating a deadly attack in Be’er Sheva’s Central Bus Station last month was innocent.

During a Knesset session, Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon discussed Israel’s policy of returning terrorists’ bodies, claiming keeping them was not a proven deterrent to further attacks.

In response, Abu Arar called on Ya’alon to release the body of Muhaned al-Okabi for burial.

“I’ve asked the prime minister and defense minister to release the body of the young Bedouin Muhaned al-Okabi,” Abu Arar declared. “It’s been over three weeks. His family and I assert his innocence.”

According to Abu Arar, “The matter needs to be investigated again and againuntil the truth is uncovered. I watched a video showing the incident at the bus station. It does not prove al-Okabi’s involvement. It shows nothing. No gunfire, no one pulling a gun or holding a gun. I therefore request that the body be released for burial.”

The Arab MK continued by arguing that “the entire Bedouin population, which is fighting a just and legitimate battle in a nonviolent way, cannot be impugned. Violence is not our way. We are always striving for equal rights.”

“The Israeli government should be ashamed of this inhuman policy,” he charged.

Abu Arar then demanded an investigation into Palestinian envoy to the UN Riyad Mansour’s claim that Israel was harvesting the organs of Palestinian Arab terrorists – which Israel quickly blasted as a “blood libel.”

“I don’t understand what the Israeli government is doing with the bodies [of slain terrorists]. It’s immoral and inhuman,” Abu Arar said.

Israeli soldier Omri Levy, 19, was brutally shot to death during the frenzied attack on October 19; nine others were wounded.