A husband and wife in their 30s, Eitam and Na'ama Henkin from the settlment of Neria, were killed in a drive-by shooting attack on the road between Itamar and Elon Moreh in the West Bank on Thursday night. Their four children aged 9, 7, 4 and 4 months were in the car and were said to be physically unharmed but treated for shock.
The IDF confirmed that two Israelis were killed in the shooting attack, and that its forces were conducting sweeps in the area in an attempt to capture the perpetrators.
The victims (Photo: Haztola)
"It was a very difficult sight," said MDA paramedic Boaz Malka. "We saw a car in the middle of the road with a man in his thirties next to it with wounds to his upper body, and a woman in her thirties inside the car also seriously wounded in her upper body. They were without signs of life, and unfortunately we had to declare them dead at the scene."
A Hamas spokesman praised the attack by the "brave resistance," calling the murderous act "heroic," and vowing to continue the struggle against Israel. The organization call for its members to carry out more attacks against Israel.
The Popular Resistance Committees also "blessed" the attack, saying it was a natural reaction to "Israeli crimes."
Knesset opposition chairman Isaac Herzog, said on his Twitter account: "The murder in Samaria which immediately put an end to the holiday jubilation, is abhorrent and extremely painful. I send my condolences to the family and the community at large which is hurting and feeling such pain. We must let the IDF and security forces act quickly and steadfastly in order to capture these murders."
The scene (Photo: Tazpit)
The UN's Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process, Nickolay Mladenov, said, “I condemn this evening’s shooting attack on an Israeli civilian vehicle which resulted in the death of two people and injuries to their four children in the occupied West Bank.There is nothing heroic about the killing of civilians. The perpetrators of this violent act must be brought to justice."
President Reuven Rivlin also condemned the attack, saying: "Tonight, bloodthirsty murderers claimed the lives of a mother and a father, leaving their young children orphaned. The heart breaks at the magnitude of such cruelty and hatred.
"We will continue in our brave and unwavering fight against this cruel and heinous terrorism - of this our enemies can be sure," continued the president. "This is our duty, and the only way we can ensure the right of the orphans who lost their parents tonight, along with the right of all our children and grandchildren, to live with security and in peace, everywhere in the Land of Israel."
A 28-year-old woman was also injured Thursday night after rocks were thrown at her near the Itzhar junction. Magen David Adom paramedics transported her to Belinson Hospital in Petah Tikqvah.
The attack occurred a mere hour after Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu derided Palestinian incitement from the podium above the UN General Assembly.
The family vehicle (Photo: Haztola )
Tensions and disturbances in the West Bank and East Jerusalem have been particularly high during the Jewish High Holy Days, even in comparison to many months of sporadic violence.
In late August, an Israeli was shot while
driving from inside a passing vehicle bearing an Israeli license plate at Jit Junction in the West Bank.
At the end of June, Malachi Rosenfeld,
25, was fatally wounded and three others were moderately wounded in a drive-by shooting near Shilo. At least 15 9mm bullets hit the car.