The sister of a Palestinian terrorist who rammed a truck into a group of soldiers in southern Jerusalem Sunday, killing four and wounding another 15, said the family was “thankful” for the attack and called her brother’s death “the most beautiful martyrdom.”
The sister, 28, whose name is Shadia, according to Maan, and who spoke to the Palestinian news site Quds News Network, said Fadi al-Qanbar was not part of any terror group, but had carried out the attack of his own volition. Maan also reported that she said Israeli forces had detained al-Qanbar’s wife Tahani, his parents Ahmad and Minwa, and two of his brothers, Muhammad and Munther.
Qanbar drove his truck at high speed into a crowd of cadets and officers who were touring Jerusalem’s southern Haas promenade, and then reversed back over some of them, killing four and wounding at least 16 before being shot dead.
The Hamas terrorist organization on Sunday hailed the attack as a “heroic” act and encouraged other Palestinians to do the same and “escalate the resistance.”
Qanbar was a resident of the nearby Jabel Mukaber neighborhood of East Jerusalem, which was placed under a closure after the attack. Police raided the family home, arresting Qanbar’s parents, sister and at least two other family members.
While Hamas praised the attack, it stopped short of claiming responsibility.
Hamas spokesman Abdul-Latif Qanou called it a “heroic” act. Qanou said Sunday’s attack proved the wave of Palestinian violence had not ended, despite a recent lull. “It may be quiet, it may linger, but it will never end.”
Hamas, which rules the Gaza Strip, is pledged to Israel’s destruction.
Also, in Gaza several youths could be seen giving out candies and sweets to passersby to celebrate the attack.
— أحمد رزق #غزة ✌ (@ahmadbannr6) January 8, 2017
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Qanbar, a married father of four, was an Islamic State supporter and that there could be a link between his attack and truck rammings at a Berlin Christmas market last month and in Nice, France earlier in the year.
His sister said Qanbar was “religious,” but did not belong to any groups.
When asked by a reporter for the Quds News Network what she thought of the attack, Qanbar’s sister responded, “God chose him for this martyrdom. Thank God. We are patient and we thank God for this… It is the most beautiful martyrdom.”
Qunbar was in his late 20s, was married and reportedly had four children. Channel 2 said he had served time in Israeli prison, a claim some family members have denied.
The sister said her family found out about her brother’s attack from Facebook and the media, and did not know about Qanbar’s plans ahead of time.