The terrorist who stabbed Rabbi Itamar Ben Gal to death in February was caught in Shechem, along with numerous suspects who hid him from law enforcement.
Abed al-Karim Adel Assi, an Israeli-Arab resident of Jaffa, disembarked at the Ariel Junction bus stop on Feb. 5, walked up to Ben Gal, and attacked him with a knife. Ben Gal managed to escape to a bus across the street, where he pounded on the door and yelled that he had been attacked, before collapsing.
Al-Karim fled the scene despite being run down and hit by the car of an off-duty IDF officer who witnessed the attack. An unidentified accomplice picked him up at the scene and took off.
Al-Karim was arrested in a joint operation utilizing forces from the Shin Bet security services, the Israel Police’s counter-terrorism Yamam unit and the IDF’s Samaria territorial brigade.
The arrests were the culmination of over a month of intelligence gathering, raids and arrests of accomplices.
“Let every murderous terrorist know we will get to him and settle the score with him,” Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman said in response to the arrests. “I congratulate the security forces for a successful intelligence operation.”
Miriam Ben Gal, the rabbi’s widow and mother to his four children, called on Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu to approve 800 new homes in Har Bracha, where they live, as “the real answer to Itamar’s murder,” and said that the arrest of Al-Karim “won’t prevent another terrorist from rising and murdering again and destroying another family.”