IDF notifies terror suspects’ family of intention to demolish their home
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IDF notifies terror suspects’ family of intention to demolish their home

Forces give official notice to relatives of Salih and Asem Barghouti, accused of committing two deadly West Bank shooting attacks near Ofra last month

Israeli soldiers conduct raids in the West Bank village of Kobar on December 31, 2018, in search of Palestinian terrorists who committed a deadly shooting attack outside the Givat Assaf outpost earlier in the month. (Israel Defense Forces)
Israeli soldiers conduct raids in the West Bank village of Kobar on December 31, 2018, in search of Palestinian terrorists who committed a deadly shooting attack outside the Givat Assaf outpost earlier in the month. (Israel Defense Forces)

The Israeli military has informed the family of two alleged Palestinian terrorists that their house in the West Bank village of Kobar is slated for demolition.

According to the Shin Bet security service, brothers Salih and Asem Barghouti carried out a shooting attack on December 9 near the Ofra settlement, injuring seven Israelis, among them a seven-months pregnant woman, who was seriously wounded. The woman’s baby was delivered in an emergency operation, but died days later.

Salih Barghouti was shot dead on December 12 in Kobar as he attacked Israeli security forces in an attempt to evade arrest, the army said at the time. A day later, a terrorist opened fire at a bus stop outside the Givat Assaf outpost near Ramallah, killing two soldiers stationed there and seriously injuring a third serviceman and a civilian woman.

Security forces say the gunman in that attack was Asem Barghouti.

A photo composite shows Sgt. Yosef Cohen, left, and Staff Sgt. Yovel Mor Yosef of the IDF’s Kfir Brigade. The two were killed on December 13, 2018, in a terrorist shooting attack outside the Givat Assaf settlement outpost in the central West Bank. (Israel Defense Forces)

IDF soldiers arrived at the home of their father, Omar, in the early morning hours of Sunday, the military said in a statement, confirming reports in Palestinian media.

The family has been given until January 23 to appeal the decision to raze their home, the IDF said.

Israeli security forces earlier in January arrested Asem Barghouti in the village of Abu Shukheidim, after a nearly month-long manhunt, the Shin Bet said.

The Shin Bet said Asem Barghouti had been “busy preparing to carry out additional terror attacks.”

A Kalashnikov assault rifle, several magazines full of ammunition and night-vision equipment were found and confiscated during the arrest, the security service said.

A poster published by Hamas claiming the December 9, 2108, Ofra terror attack and praising the ‘martyr’ Salih Barghouti, posted on Hamas’s official Twitter account, December 12, 2108. (Twitter)

Since the terror attacks, Israeli troops have arrested and questioned dozens of family members and associates of the Barghouti brothers.

Asem Barghouti, whose family has an extensive history in the Hamas terror group, was set free from an Israeli prison in April 2017 after serving an 11-year sentence.

Seven people were wounded in the drive-by shooting attack on a bus stop outside Ofra on December 9, which Israel says was committed by Asem and Salih Barghouti. Hamas later confirmed that Salih was behind the attack.

Shira and Amichai Ish-Ran, both injured on December 9, 2018 when a Palestinian terrorist opened fire on Israelis near the settlement of Ofra, hold a press conference at the Shaare Zedek hospital in Jerusalem on December 16, 2018. (Yonatan Sindel/FLASH90)

Shira Ish-Ran was critically injured in the shooting. Her baby — delivered in emergency surgery by doctors hours later — died after four days as a result of the attack. He was posthumously named Amiad Yisrael.

Asem (L) and Salih (R) Barghouti at a rally in Kobar after the former was released from Israeli prison in April 2018 (screenshot: Twitter)

Shira and her husband Amichai, who sustained three gunshot wounds to the leg, have since been released from the hospital.

The day after Israeli forces shot and killed Salih, Asem allegedly shot dead the two soldiers near Givat Assaf — Sgt. Yosef Cohen and Staff Sgt. Yovel Mor Yosef — and seriously wounded two other people, soldier Netanel Felber and Shira Sabag, a civilian woman.

Judah Ari Gross contributed to this report.

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