The policeman who was stabbed by a Jordanian man in Jerusalem Saturday before shooting his attacker dead said he acted “to save civilians” as well as his own life.
Identified as officer “N,” the officer was being treated at Jerusalem’s Shaare Tzedek Medical Center with moderate injuries. He was visited Saturday evening by Jerusalem Police Chief Yoram Halevi, who praised his actions during the ordeal.
“We are very proud of you, proud of what you did and how you reacted,” Halevi said. “You responded correctly, you were at the right place. I am personally proud of you. Your commanders and all of us in Jerusalem are proud of you.”
“N” responded: “You don’t have any choice. You need to fight to save civilians and your own life. I tried to do everything I could for my family.”
The officer was attacked by Muhammad Abdullah Salim al-Kassji, a 57-year-old Jordanian citizen who entered Israel several days ago. Al-Kassji was apparently returning from prayers at the Al-Aqsa Mosque when he carried out the attack.
Al-Kassji stabbed “N” in the neck and head before being shot dead by the policeman.
Police released security camera footage of the incident Saturday evening, in which the harrowing attack is seen as it occurred in the streets of the Old City. In it, the officer can be seen walking down the street when he is violently assailed by al-Kassji.
The 37-year-old police officer was conscious and in stable condition when evacuated to the hospital. A second man was lightly wounded, with cuts to the hand.
After the incident police arrested a local merchant who they suspected prevented passers-by from helping the policeman during the attack.
A video uploaded by the Palestinian Quds News Network (graphic) appeared to show the aftermath of the attack, with policemen attending to the injured officer and the alleged attacker lying inert on the ground.