Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Tuesday visited a man who was critically wounded in a stabbing attack in the central Israeli city of Yavne last week.
The prime minister praised Niv Nehemiah, calling him a hero, as he sat at the side of his bed in the Kaplan Medical Center in Rehovot.
“Niv is a hero, who fought against the terrorist with his two hands and prevented a great disaster,” Netanyahu said.
He said that it was wonderful to see him recovering with his family.
“We all prayed that he would come out of this,” he said. “I saw him with his family, and it is simply heart-warming. I bless him and embrace him in the name of the entire people of Israel.”
Nehemiah, 43, regained consciousness on Sunday and the hospital said that his condition was improving but he remains in serious condition.
Nehemiah’s mother, Hadassah, thanked the public for its support.
“You give us a lot of strength,” she said in a press conference at the hospital. “My son also strengthens us, demonstrating the intensity of his soul.”
She also thanked God and the hospital staff.
“I want to give thanks to the Creator of the world, to the dear Jewish people and to the prime minister, for the encouragement and many prayers for the recovery of Niv, our son,” she continued. “Thanks to Dr. Carlos and the medical team in the Kaplan Medical Center, my son is making progress day by day.”
Nehemiah, who worked at the supermarket, was stocking shelves when the attacker suddenly took out a knife and stabbed him in the upper body.
Though injured, the victim fought off the terrorist and ran, blocking the aisle after him with a handcart, his assailant hot in pursuit.
He suffered stab wounds to the chest, neck and head, according to medical officials.
After the stabbing, the terrorist — Ismail Ibrahim Ismail Abu Aram, 19 — fled the scene and was tackled to the ground by civilians. He was later arrested by security forces.