Israel has turned over to the Palestinian Authority the bodies of seven terrorists who were killed carrying out recent attacks on Israelis.
Some of the bodies had been held by Israel for over a month, the PA Civil Affairs Ministry said Sunday.
According to the Palestinians’ Maan News Agency, Palestinians say Israel still has possession of some 50 bodies of terrorists killed during attacks over the past three months, some one-third from the Hebron area, which saw the highest share of attacks.
Among the bodes returned were those of Muhammad Zahran from Kafr Addik village near Nablus, who stabbed and injured two security guards at an industrial park outside the West Bank settlement of Ariel last week; Raed Muhammad al-Khatib from Bethlehem, who attempted a stabbing attack at the Gush Etzion junction at the beginning of December; Wissam Tawabte from Beit Fajjar, a town south of Bethlehem, who murdered 21-year-old Hadar Buchris in a stabbing attack at the Gush Etzion Junction in November; Samir al-Sarisi from Jenin who tried to stab security forces at the Tapuah Junction; Muhammad al-Shubaki from Hebron, who seriously injured an IDF soldier in a stabbing attack in November; and Issa Haroub from Hebron, who tried to ram Israeli soldiers with a car in December.
Israel’s Defense Ministry permits the return of bodies of terrorists killed at the scene by Israeli security forces on the condition that the funerals do not become mass gatherings, for fear that they will descend into violence.
For over three months Palestinians have carried out near daily attacks on Israeli civilians and security forces including stabbings, shootings, and car ramming attacks. More than 20 Israelis have been killed and dozens injured. Among Palestinians, over 100 have been killed, most of them as they carried out attacks, and others in violent riots with security forces.
Israeli authorities in some cases delay the return of the bodies in order to prevent or at least dampen the mass-rallies that accompany the terrorists’ funerals, where participants often call for the murder of Israelis and urge new terror attacks. The delay is thought to lessen the significance attached to any particular attacker, and so to reduce participation in the funeral.