2017 Jerusalem truck attack
The 2017 Jerusalem truck attack, which occurred on 8 January 2017, was a vehicle-ramming attack. A truck driven by an Arab citizen of Israel plowed into a group of uniformed Israel Defense Forces (IDF) soldiers disembarking from a bus on the Armon Hanatziv Esplanade in East Jerusalem's East Talpiot neighborhood, close to the Trotner park and UNTSO headquarters, killing four and injuring 15.
|2017 Jerusalem truck attack|
|Part of the Israeli–Palestinian conflict|
|Location||Armon Hanatziv Esplanade, East Talpiot, East Jerusalem|
|Date||8 January 2017 |
|Deaths||5 (including the perpetrator)|
|Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine|
The Martyr of Baha Alyan Collective (claimed responsibility)
Just hours after the incident, Benjamin Netanyahu, the Prime Minister of Israel, blamed the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) for the attack, raising questions about how he came to that conclusion. Opponents criticized the Israeli Government for downplaying the political side. Later, the attack was claimed by an unknown Palestinian group called "The Martyr of Baha Alyan Collective", citing political motives. The attack was condemned by the United Nations, European Union, the United States and others.
At around 13:00, a truck rammed into a group of IDF soldiers at a promenade in the East Talpiot neighborhood in southeast Jerusalem. One male and three female soldiers were killed and 15 soldiers were injured. Of those injured, two were in critical condition after the attack. The attacker was shot dead by several of the soldiers and their civilian tour guide. Israeli officials describe the attack to be an "act of terrorism".
Initial reports, including an account by the civilian tour guide who used his personal handgun to shoot at the driver, alleged that one of the soldiers hesitated before shooting, possibly as a result of the manslaughter conviction earlier in the month of Sgt. Elor Azaria, who had killed an incapacitated Palestinian assailant. Despite this report, the IDF reported that at least two soldiers fired at the attacker, and denied a connection between troops’ response to Azaria case. One of the cadets at the scene is quoted as saying that they fought for their friends and "Nobody was scared to shoot for even one minute".
- Lt. Yael Yekutiel, 20, from Givatayim
- Second Lt. Erez Orbach, 20, from Alon Shvut
- Lt. Shir Hajaj, 22, from Ma'ale Adumim
- Second Lt. Shira Tzur, 20, from Haifa
These ranks reflect their posthumous promotions.
A 28-year-old Arab Israeli man from Jabel Mukaber in East Jerusalem driving a car with an Israeli license plate. Nana 10 reported that he had served time in jail in the past, and Walla reported he had Israeli citizenship.
Prime Minister Netanyahu blamed ISIL soon after the attack stating "all signs show he is a supporter of the Islamic State". The claims made by him just hours after the attack raised questions to how he came to that conclusion. Israeli Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman also drew parallels with ISIL attacks in Germany and France. Opponents accused the Israeli government of downplaying politics, they claimed that Palestinian attacks are more motivated by nationalism rather than religion and considered Israeli accusations to be unconvincing for policymakers. Later reports stated that the perpetrator was a member of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, and that the PFLP had claimed him as their member. Others alleged that the perpetrator supported ISIL. A little-known Palestinian group called "The Martyr of Baha Alyan Collective" claimed responsibility on 9 January. It stated that it had no outside links, had acted on political motives and it wasn't its first attack. It also warned that it will carry out more attacks in the future.
Of nine suspects taken into custody on suspicion of involvement, five were members of the perpetrator's family: his wife, parents, and two siblings, and an Israeli Cabinet meeting was scheduled.
Accusations of reporting controversies
NRG stated that the title used by the BBC, "Driver of lorry shot in Jerusalem after allegedly ramming pedestrians, injuring at least 15, Israeli media report", was biased. Later that day Honest Reporting, an advocacy group focused on defending Israel in the media, wrote that the BBC modified the title  and iterated over several other titles. Mako have criticized Fox News and CNN in addition to BBC for the titles that they used to describe the event. Mako claimed that omitting such information (withholding that it was a terrorist attack and done by a Palestinian) constitutes falsifying the reports. Mako also claimed that it is the same case as it was during Sharona market shooting, the murder of Hadar Cohen and the March 2016 attacks. Honest Reporting also criticized CNN, New York Times, The Guardian and NPR. Honest Reporting called the news headlines biased when they do not explain the key factors of terror attack or fail to mention that they were carried out by a Palestinian assailant, or for refusing to use the term "terrorist".
- The Israeli Cabinet decided that any person showing support for ISIS will be administratively detained, and that perpetrator's family house will be demolished.
- MK Yoav Galant member of the Israeli Cabinet in an interview stated to the Army radio "we should demolish houses and deport perpetrator's family, even if they have citizenship". later he asked to in an interview to Ynet he said the family should be deported to Syria. he also called for legislation that would give the interior minister authority to expel families of terrorists and revoke their national insurance benefits
- Member of the Knesset Sharren Haskel in an interview to the BBC stated that the attack happened following incitements by Abu Mazen (Mahmoud Abbas).
- Prime Minister Netanyahu criticized the Palestinian Authority (PA) for not condemning the attack and also criticized Palestinians for praising terrorism. Defence Minister Lieberman meanwhile alleged that the attack was the result of the inflammatory sermons President of the State of Palestine Mahmoud Abbas had ordered imams in mosques to preach.
- Hamas spokesman Abdul-Latif Qanou called it a "heroic" act and encouraged other Palestinians to do the same and "escalate the resistance." In the Gaza Strip, the ruling Hamas group praised the attack, calling it a "natural response to the Israeli occupier’s crimes" and proof that the "Jerusalem Intifada" was not over.
- Islamic Jihad Movement in Palestine termed the incident as a "natural response from Palestinians to the ongoing Israeli aggression and its violent treatment of Palestinian people."
- United Nations: Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process Nickolay Evtimov Mladenov wrote on Twitter that "My thoughts go out to victims of shocking #terror attack in #Jerusalem. Must be condemned by all. Absolutely no excuses, no justifications!"
- European Union: Spokesperson for European Union Foreign Affairs chief Federica Mogherini condemned the terror attack in Jerusalem.
- Norway: Norway's Foreign Minister Børge Brende wrote "My most sincere condolences to the families of the killed and my thoughts to the victims and their loved ones".
- United States: Deputy Department Spokesperson Mark C. Toner: "We condemn in the strongest possible terms today's horrific vehicular attack by a terrorist in Jerusalem. There is absolutely no justification for these brutal and senseless attacks. We condemn the glorification of terrorism now or at any time and call on all to send a clear message that terrorism must never be tolerated."
- Germany: The Brandenburg Gate in Berlin was lit with the Flag of Israel as a gesture of solidarity with Israel and the victims of the attack in Jerusalem.
- Hasson, Nir; Cohen, Gili; Efrati, Ido; Ravid, Barak (8 January 2017). "Jerusalem Attack: 4 Soldiers Killed After Truck Rams Into Pedestrians" – via Haaretz.
- Wootliff, Raoul. "Driver in Jerusalem truck-ramming reportedly shot dead". Times of Israel. Retrieved 8 January 2017.
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- "הותר לפרסום כי שלוש חיילות וחייל נרצחו בפיגוע הדריסה שאירע בארמון הנציב בירושלים. עוד נפצעו שני חיילים באורח קשה, שלושה בינוני ו-12 נוספים נפצעו קל".
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- "4 killed as driver plows truck into troops in Jerusalem terror attack". Times of Israel.
The driver of the truck was identified as Fadi al-Qanbar, a resident of the capital’s Jabel Mukaber neighborhood, according to Arab media. The truck, with Israeli license plates, came from the direction of that neighborhood, which is adjacent to the promenade. He was in his late 20s, married with four children, and had served time in Israeli jail, Channel 2 said. He bought the truck last year.
- "מקורות פלסטינים: "למחבל עבר ביטחוני והוא עבד עבור קבלן בנייה"".
- "פיגוע דריסה בירושלים: 4 חיילים נהרגו ו-13 נפצעו מפגיעת משאית - וואלה! חדשות".
- חורי, ג'קי; חסון, ניר (8 January 2017). "משפחתו של המחבל: הוא לא היה מזוהה עם שום ארגון" – via Haaretz.
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- Ohad Hemo. "fireworks fired at Magav". Channel 2.
- "חדשות 10 on Twitter".
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- "גלי צה"ל : השר גלנט: "יש להרוס בתים, לגרש משפחות ולשלול ת.ז."
- "גלנט: "לגרש את משפחת המחבל לסוריה (video interview)". Ynet. Retrieved 9 January 2017.
- "Minister Galant: Expel terrorist's family to Syria". Ynet. Retrieved 9 January 2017.
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- Brandenburg Gate lit up in memory of terror attack victims, Arutz 7, 9 January 2017.