A Palestinian man was arrested by Israeli security forces in Ramallah overnight Friday on suspicion of the brutal murder of the 19-year-old Israeli woman Ori Ansbacher in Jerusalem on Thursday, according to a joint statement from police and the Shin Bet.
The suspect, a Palestinian resident of Hebron, was taken for questioning by the Shin Bet Security service, the statement said.
A court-imposed gag order on the case was partially lifted to reveal the arrest of the suspect, the statement said, but all other details of the murder investigation remain barred from publication.
Palestinian media outlets reported that undercover Israeli forces raided the Ramallah/el-Bireh area on Friday night, confiscating security cameras and arresting a Palestinian man.
According to PA news outlet Wafa, IDF troops searched two residential buildings and the Jamal Abdel-Nasser Mosque, where a 30-year-old employee was arrested. The report said the Israeli troops confiscated security camera footage from the neighborhood as well as from the mosque.
The raid sparked clashes with some local residents, who hurled rocks at the Israeli troops. The Palestinian Red Crescent said two Palestinians were treated for light injuries at hospitals in Ramallah.
The raid came hours after Israeli authorities reportedly made a “significant breakthrough” in the Ansbacher murder investigation. No further details on the breakthrough were reported due to the gag order.
— Joe Truzman (@Jtruzmah) February 8, 2019
The body of Ansbacher, an Israeli teen from the West Bank settlement of Tekoa, was found at Ein Yael, located south of Jerusalem late Thursday. Ein Yael lies between the Jerusalem Biblical Zoo and the West Bank village of Walaja. The murder was described by Israeli authorities as brutal; Ansbacher was said to have been stabbed multiple times.
Channel 13 said late Friday that police believe the motive for the killing was likely “nationalistic” — the term generally used for Palestinian terrorism — and that searches were being carried out in the West Bank. The TV reports stressed, however, that a criminal motive had not been ruled out, and nor had “a combination of the two” motives.
Ansbacher was buried in her hometown of Tekoa earlier on Friday and politicians from across the political spectrum issued statements of condolence.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu issued a statement on the murder, saying Ansbacher was killed “with shocking brutality.”
“At this difficult hour we all embrace the Ansbacher family and the people of Tekoa. The security forces are investigating the murder — we will find those responsible for it, and we will bring the matter to justice,” the prime minister pledged.
She was carrying out a year of national service at a youth center in Jerusalem at the time of her death.