Almost a month after the terrorist attack in the West Bank's northern Jordan Valley in which British-Israeli national Lucy Dee and her daughters Maia and Rina were murdered, the two terrorists who carried out the attack – Hamas operatives Hassan Katnani and Mae'd al-Masri - were killed by Israeli security forces in a daring Thursday morning in the Nablus. Ibrahim Hura, the owner of the apartment who aided and hid the terrorists was also killed.
Police reported that during the raid, a 7-year-old K9 police dog named Django was killed while protecting troops, having prevented harm to soldiers with his body. Django had participated in hundreds of IDF activities including counterterror operations and aiding in the arrest of wanted individuals.
Rabbi Leo Dee spoke to Ynet after the raid and expressed relief that the killers of his wife and daughters were no longer able to harm anyone else.
"The world will be able to sleep better when these terrorists are no longer alive. I am very happy to hear that no soldier or civilian was hurt or affected in the event. It is a mission that only the IDF and the Shin Bet can do," he said.
"We are proud to live in a country where security forces are so precise and skilled, and we are very grateful to the army and forces for assassinating the terrorists."
The father added that he would like to speak with the families of the terrorists. "I would like to ask them what their relatives wanted to achieve with this murder? What will this do to their children, what did they hope to accomplish?"
The operation began shortly before 7am following an intel lead obtained by the Shin Bet security agency.
Undercover Israeli special forces raided the hideout apartment in the center of Nablus and killed the two terrorists and the collaborator after a short shootout. Two other Palestinians were hurt by smoke inhalation from smoke grenades in the surgical operation.
Some 200 troops participated in the hour-an-a-half-long operation. Israeli forces came under heavy fire and stone-throwing in the ensuing clashes with Palestinian militants.
During the raid, troops deployed the so-called "pressure cooker" tactic, which included dropping a stun grenade off a drone at the building where the suspects were holed up in an attempt to flush them out.
Security officials estimate that the suspects were hiding in Nablus since the attack on the Dee family almost a month ago. The vehicle used by the terrorist during the attack was recovered by Israeli forces.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu sent a stern warning after the successful operation. "This morning we settled the score with the murderers of Lucy, Maia, and Rina Dee. Our message to those who harm us, and to those who try to harm us, is that it may take a day, a week, or a month - be assured that we will come for you. It doesn't matter where you try to hide, we will find you. Whoever harms us - their blood is on their own heads."
A senior IDF Central Command official told Ynet that the Nablus area was still secured by a whole battalion since "we are in the midst of a challenging time with shooting events over the past two weeks". He added, "There are no safe havens in the West Bank, neither in Jenin nor in Nablus."
Nablus Governor Ibrahim Ramadan provided an unusual response to the raid, blaming the Palestinian terrorists for their own deaths by refusing to surrender to Palestinian security services.
"The killing of the young men in Nablus this morning is a natural result of their non-compliance with the Palestinian security services and their refusal to surrender their weapons," he said.
"Security forces tried to persuade them a few weeks ago to surrender themselves and hand over their weapons, and they refused."