Illegal Palestinian worker arrested for allegedly planning stabbing attack

Police say man employed at Tel Aviv construction site confessed to intending to buy a knife in order ‘to stab Jews’

Illustrative: A Palestinian construction worker in Israel (Nati Shohat/Flash90)
Illustrative: A Palestinian construction worker in Israel (Nati Shohat/Flash90)

A Palestinian man arrested Wednesday after working illegally in Israel admitted to planning a stabbing attack, police said on Thursday.

While being interrogated, the Palestinian worker confessed to seeking to buy a knife in order “to stab Jews,” according to police.

Police said the suspect, who was working at a construction site in Tel Aviv, was detained during an operation against employers of illegal Palestinian workers.

The Palestinian, a West Bank resident born in 1996, will be brought the Tel Aviv Magistrate’s Court on Thursday for a hearing on extending his remand, police said.

Police did not reveal the name or hometown of the suspect.

In August 2016, IDF Chief of Staff Gadi Eisenkot said that an estimated 50,000 to 60,000 Palestinians enter Israel illegally every day in order to work by exploiting weak points in Israel’s West Bank security barrier.  At the time, the IDF chief also said that over 40 percent of the terror attacks carried out during a roughly year-long upsurge in violence beginning in October 2015 were in some way connected to Palestinians who were in Israel illegally.

In June 2016, Palestinian cousins Muhammad and Khalid Muhamra of the southern West Bank town of Yatta killed four Israelis in a shooting attack at Tel Aviv’s popular Sarona Market after entering Israel illegally, with the attack leading to widespread scrutiny in the country over the ability of tens of thousands of Palestinians to enter the country illegally every day.

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