Shin Bet: Stabber was in Jerusalem on a permit, looking for work

Palestinian terrorist scoped out the area before critically wounding Israeli Adiel Kolman in the capital’s Old City; victim died later of his injuries

Judah Ari Gross is The Times of Israel's religions and Diaspora affairs correspondent.

Illustrative: Security personnel at the scene where a security guard was attacked and seriously injured in a terror attack in the Old City of Jerusalem, March 18, 2018. (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)
Illustrative: Security personnel at the scene where a security guard was attacked and seriously injured in a terror attack in the Old City of Jerusalem, March 18, 2018. (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)

A Palestinian terrorist who stabbed an Israeli to death in Jerusalem’s Old City on Sunday had entered Israel with a permit that allowed him into the city to look for work, the Shin Bet security service said.

The assailant, Abd al-Rahman Bani Fadel, 28, spoke to a number of vendors in the Old City’s Muslim Quarter before carrying out the attack.

Shortly before 5 p.m., Fadel walked up to the victim on Hagai Street and stabbed him repeatedly in the upper body, critically wounding him. The victim, father-of-four Adiel Kolman, died hours later of his injuries.

The terrorist then fled the scene, but was spotted by nearby police officers, who opened fire, fatally wounding him.

Adiel Kolman, who was killed in a stabbing attack in Jerusalem’s Old city on March 19 2018 (Courtesy)

Medics rushed into the stone alleyways of the Old City in order to reach the wounded Israeli, who was said to be approximately 30 years old. Due to the narrowness of the passageways, the victim was taken out of the area on a buggy, the Magen David Adom ambulance service said. He was treated in the Shaare Zedek Medical Center, but died several hours later.

Fadel’s five-day permit, which began on Sunday, allowed him to enter Jerusalem in order to look for work, the Shin Bet said.

Fadel, a father of two from the Palestinian village of Aqraba, near the West Bank city of Nablus, did not have known ties to any Palestinian terrorist organization — if he had, he would not have received the work permit — but, in light of the attack, the Shin Bet said it was re-investigating the issue.

The security service dispelled earlier rumors that the attacker was a Turkish national.

Portions of the Old City were closed down immediately following the attack, and more officers were brought into the area to provide additional security, police said.

“I praise the police officer who reacted swiftly and killed the terrorist and prevented further injuries,” said Public Security Minister Gilad Erdan in a tweet. “The Israel Police will continue to take action against despicable terrorists who are incited [to violence] by the Palestinian Authority in Jerusalem and throughout the country.”

Once common in the Old City, stabbing attacks have waned in recent months. However, tensions have been on the rise around Jerusalem since US President Donald Trump recognized the city as Israel’s capital in December. This month, he also announced that the US Embassy would be moving from its current location in Tel Aviv to Jerusalem on May 14.

On Friday, two Israeli soldiers were killed and two others were injured when a Palestinian man rammed his car into them as they were standing outside a military observation post along a highway near the Mevo Dotan settlement in the northern West Bank.

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