Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu has announced that the murder of 16-year-old Muhmad Abu-Khadir was a nationalistic attack as many hoped and feared would not be the case. According to the statement, the suspects in custody carried out the attack to avenge the Hamas kidnapping and murder of Gilad Shaar, Naftali Frenkel and Eyal Yifrach HY”D.
The prime minister stated, “I am visiting today with my family, the families of Gilad, Naftali and Eyal, who were murdered by Hamas terrorists. I promised their dear families that we will continue to stand by them, even after the days of mourning.
“We know exactly who kidnapped and murdered Gilad, Naftali and Eyal, and we’ll get them. The murderers came from the territory controlled by the Palestinian Authority; they returned to territory controlled by the Palestinian Authority. Therefore, the Palestinian Authority is obliged to do everything in its power to find them, just as we did, just as our security forces located the suspects in the murder of Muhmad Abu-Khalid within a matter of days.
“I would like to send my condolences to the Abu-Khadir family. I pledge that the perpetrators of this horrific crime, which must be resolutely condemned in the most forceful language. I pledge that the perpetrators of this horrific crime will face the full weight of the law. I know that in our society, the society of Israel, there is no place for such murderers. And that’s the difference between us and our neighbors. They consider murderers to be heroes. They name public squares after them. We don’t. We condemn them and we put them on trial and we’ll put them in prison.
“And that’s not the only difference. While we put these murderers on trial, in the Palestinian Authority, there is continuous incitement for the destruction of the State of Israel. It’s a staple of the official media and the educational system.
“This is an asymmetrical conflict. We do not seek their destruction; they teach a very broad segment of their society to seek our destruction. And that must end. There is too much suffering. There is too much pain.
“We do not differentiate between the terrorists and we will respond to all of them, wherever they come from, with a firm hand. We will not allow extremists from wherever they come to ignite the region and shed more blood.
(YWN – Israel Desk, Jerusalem)