IDF again says it’s sealing apartment of terrorist who killed Ari Fuld

Announcement comes amid criticism military not doing enough to combat terror attacks in the West Bank

Judah Ari Gross is The Times of Israel's military correspondent.

Illustrative. Israeli forces issue a demolition order for the West Bank home of Ashraf Na’alowa, the suspected terrorist who shot and killed two Israelis at the Barkan Industrial Park, October 15, 2018 (IDF Spokesperson's Unit)
Illustrative. Israeli forces issue a demolition order for the West Bank home of Ashraf Na’alowa, the suspected terrorist who shot and killed two Israelis at the Barkan Industrial Park, October 15, 2018 (IDF Spokesperson's Unit)

The Israeli military on Sunday announced for the second time its intention to seal shut the apartment of a Palestinian terrorist who stabbed to death an American-Israeli man in September.

“The head of the IDF Central Command Maj. Gen. Nadav Padan signed a demolition order for the apartment in which the terrorist who murdered Ari Fuld lived,” the army said in a statement.

Last month, the Israel Defense Forces also notified the family of the terrorist, 17-year-old Khalil Jabarin, that it planned to destroy the top-floor apartment in which he lived, but implementation was delayed after the family filed an appeal.

The army’s announcement of its plan to destroy Jabarin’s apartment on Sunday came amid increasing criticism, predominantly from settler and right-wing activists and politicians, against the military’s ostensible inaction against Palestinian terror.

On Saturday, the military demolished the home of a Palestinian charged with killing Israeli soldier Staff Sgt. Ronen Lubarsky earlier this year. The IDF detonated explosives in the four-story building inhabited by the family of Islam Yousef Abu Hamid in the al-Am’ari refugee camp close to Ramallah.

IDF soldiers measure the home of a Palestinian terrorist who stabbed an Israeli man to death in order to prepare the building for demolition in the West Bank village of Yatta, near Hebron, on September 17, 2018. (Israel Defense Forces)

Jabarin’s family home is located in the town of Yatta, near Hebron. Security forces mapped out the apartment for demolition the day after the stabbing attack.

The military order would allow army engineers to fill the top floor of the family’s three-story building with concrete and barbed wire in order to seal it off.

On November 27, the family was given a week to appeal the decision with the military, which it did. That appeal was rejected earlier this month.

With the signing of the demolition order by Padan, the family was given two days to file an additional appeal with the High Court of Justice.

Khalil Jabarin, who fatally stabbed Israeli Ari Fuld in a West Bank terror attack on September 16, 2018 (Screenshot/Twitter)

Israel generally razes the homes of Palestinian terrorists who commit attacks in which people are killed or seriously injured. The government defends the measure as an effective means of discouraging future attacks, though it has been criticized by human rights groups as a form of collective punishment and by some analysts as an ineffective deterrent measure.

In Jabarin’s case, it appeared as though his family had attempted to prevent him from carrying out the deadly attack.

The day after the stabbing, the IDF said Jabarin’s mother had gone to the Meitar checkpoint in the southern West Bank and warned soldiers, at approximately the same time the stabbing took place, that her son planned to commit an attack.

Ari Fuld (Facebook)

Jabarin stabbed Fuld, a father of four, multiple times in the back and neck as he was standing outside a supermarket near the Gush Etzion Junction in the central West Bank on September 16. After he was stabbed, Fuld pursued and shot his assailant as the man attempted to attack a shop employee, possibly saving her life. He then collapsed and was rushed to a hospital, but succumbed to his wounds.

Jabarin, who was shot by Fuld and another armed civilian at the scene, was taken to Hadassah Hospital Mount Scopus in moderate condition with multiple gunshot wounds, hospital officials said at the time. In October, prosecutors at a West Bank military court charged him with intentionally causing death — the military court’s equivalent of murder — along with a number of lesser charges.

Fuld, who was a well-known Israel advocate and right-wing activist, was posthumously awarded the Medal of Distinction — the third-highest award that can be granted by the Israel Police.

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