Defense Minister Ehud Barak
Photo: AP

Barak: Nablus shooting a murder

IDF says PA responsible for Joseph's Tomb shooting that left one Israeli dead, five injured; Defense Minister Barak says 'no coordination mishap justifies shooting at innocent people'

Defense Minister Ehud Barak condemned Sunday's shooting incident near Joseph's Tomb, calling it "a murder." The shooting left one Israeli dead and five injured.


Barak's office said: "No coordination mishap justifies this kind of outcome or the shooting of innocent people." Barak ordered the IDF to investigate, as well as demanded "the PA take swift and full measures against the shooters."


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The IDF said that it viewed the incident gravely and expected a full investigation by the Palestinian Authority. The latter, said a military source has already launched an investigation, as well as expressed their regret about the incident's outcome.


Earlier, a senior IDF official in the GOC Central Command said that the military held the PA responsible for the shooting: "We hold the PA responsible for its troops and will pursue the matter to its fullest extent."


The officer refused to comment about a possible extradition request for the individuals involved by Israel.


The senior sources added that the Palestinians are likely to share their findings with the IDF, saying working relations with Palestinian security forces were effective throughout the Judea and Samaria sector. This cooperation is considered a vital tool, whose importance is only expected to grow.


An initial military investigation revealed that the Israeli worshipers entered Joseph's Tomb without coordinating their visit in advance. Around 5:45 am – and after a Palestinian security patrol attempted to stop them – they clashed with local security forces.


Palestinian police officers fired several warning shots in the air, before directing fire at two of the three vehicles present.


According to military sources, an IDF forensics team was dispatched to the scene after discussions with the PA to that effect. "We've collected shell-casings and other evidence found at the scene and the investigation in ongoing.


"As we understand it, four Palestinian officers involved in the shooting have been detained. We know the Palestinian policemen attempted to stop the Hassidim and deployed a road spike strip that they moved.


"We are also looking into a claim, that we think is false, that the Palestinian policemen were stoned," said the military source.


IDF forces occasionally operates in the Nablus area, mainly to stop people from infiltrating the Tomb during the night. The Breslovers made their way to the compound at first light, which was why they were not stopped by the IDF.


The Judea and Samaria Division and the Border Guard are gearing for possible price tag incident on settlers' part.


Hanan Greenberg and Attila Somfalvi contributed to this report



פרסום ראשון: 04.24.11, 12:46
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