Four Israeli Civilians Shot Dead in Terror Attack Near Hebron
31 August 2010 , 20:31
Scene of the event at Bnei Naim
Inside the car which was fired upon, only four bodies were found. Photo: Google Maps
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Hamas has claimed full responsibility for the shooting attack which resulted in the murder of Yizhak and Talia Aimes, Avishai Shindler and Kochba Even-Chaim

Four Israeli civilians were shot dead while driving on Route 60 on Tuesday evening (Aug 31) when terrorists opened fire on their vehicle near Bnei Naim, east of Hebron. Those killed were Yizhak and Talia Aimes, Avishai Shindler and Kochba Even-Chaim, all residents of Beit Chagay.  The families were notified and the IDF sent its condolences.  

Security forces in the area have constructed road blocks and are currently searching the area for the terrorists responsible. It appears that the attack was carried out by a passing vehicle, however the investigation is still underway. The Chief of the General Staff, Lt. Gen. Gabi Ashkenazi, GOC of the Central Command, Maj. Gen. Avi Mizrahi, and the Commander of the Judea and Samaria Regional Brigade, Brig. Gen. Nitzan Alon, arrived on the scene and conducted operational and intelligence situation assessments.
 
Lt. Gen. Ashkenazi added that, "there is no doubt that this was a very difficult event. Firstly, we all express our condolences to the families and the community of Bet Hagay. We are operating on a number of different levels since the event took place and will continue to act until we get a hold of the terrorists. The IDF, together with the rest of the different security apparatuses, is operating and will continue to do so until we catch the murderers responsible for this event."

Israel will not allow any terrorist to hold his head high"

IDF forces are currently searching the area for the terrorists. Izz ad-Din al-Qassam Brigades, the military wing of Hamas, claimed responsibility for the fatal attack. An official statement by Hamas reported that the Izz ad-Din al-Qassam Brigades take full responsibility for the heroic operation in Hebron.

Following the incident, Defense Minister Ehud Barak was briefed by Chief of the General Staff, Lt. Gen. Gabi Ashkenazi and head of the Israel Security Agency (ISA) Yuval Diskin.

This is a grave and serious event. The IDF and security forces will do everything in order to lay our hands on the murderers, the Defense Minister said. Israel will not allow any terrorist to hold his head high and will make the murderers, and those who sent them, pay for what they have done.  It seems that this was an attempt by low level terrorists to harm the peace process and the chance of success of peace talks which are set to begin in Washington, he added.

Vehicle sprayed with dozens of bullets and inside were four bodies

Commander of the Judea and Samaria Division, Brig. Gen. Nitzan Alon, said it seems the attack was executed by a passing vehicle. It is our belief that these were Hamas operatives. That being said, we are continuing our investigation of every possibility. Brig. Gen. Alon said that IDF forces in the area were already practicing higher security measures in light of the upcoming holiday season, but sadly we were unable to prevent the attack. We will maintain the heightened security alert in these coming weeks. The IDF forces are currently searching the area in order to locate the terrorists.

The head of Magen David Adom (Israels national emergency response service) Eli Bin, said, Unfortunately there were no survivors of the shooting attack near Bnei Naim, and inside the car which was fired upon, four bodies were found. Bin told Channel 10 that initially emergency helicopters were sent to the site, but after the status of the victims was verified, they were sent back to their bases.

Guy Gonen, a Magen David Adom paramedic who arrived with the first team to reach the scene of the attack said that they found a vehicle sprayed with dozens of bullets and inside were four bodies, with no chance to rescue those killed.

Last June, policeman Yehoshua Sofer was killed in a shooting attack in the southern Hebron Hills, close to Beit Chagay. The attack was executed in an ambush on Route 60 when fire was opened on the police vehicle in which Sofer was traveling. During that event, two additional policemen were injured.