Palestinian woman brandishing knife is shot dead at checkpoint
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Palestinian woman brandishing knife is shot dead at checkpoint

In note found after incident, would-be stabber said she was acting in ‘defense of her homeland’ and apologized to her family

Raoul Wootliff is the The Times of Israel's political correspondent.

IDF soldiers at the site of a thwarted stabbing attempt, at the Eliyahu Crossing in the West Bank, on November 9, 2015. (Defense Ministry)
IDF soldiers at the site of a thwarted stabbing attempt, at the Eliyahu Crossing in the West Bank, on November 9, 2015. (Defense Ministry)

Defense Ministry guards shot dead a Palestinian woman who approached them with a knife Monday morning near the West Bank settlement of Alfei Menashe, the Defense Ministry said.

The incident came a day after a stabbing attack in the same area.

Brandishing the blade, the woman advanced toward the guards at the Eliyahu checkpoint. She was shot after she refused to halt, despite being urged to several times by the guards, the Defense Ministry said.

A note written by the woman to her family was later found on her person. Palestinian sources identified her as Rasha Owaisi, 23, of Qalqilya.

“I’m ending my path, and I’m reaching this end with my full mental capacity, in defense of my homeland and the young men and women [of my people],” Owaisi wrote in the letter. “I can’t bear what I see any longer. All I know is that I can’t take it.

“To my mother and brothers, please forgive me,” she added.

Following the incident, police closed part of Route 55 between Qalqilya and Nablus.

A knife and handwritten note found on the person of a Palestinian woman shot dead during an apparent attempt to stab Israeli security guards at the Eliyahu Crossing in the West Bank on Monday, November 9, 2015 (Defense Ministry)
A knife and handwritten note found on the person of a Palestinian woman shot dead during an apparent attempt to stab Israeli security guards at the Eliyahu Crossing in the West Bank on Monday, November 9, 2015 (Defense Ministry)

On Sunday a 48-year-old man was seriously injured in a stabbing attack near Alfei Menashe.

According to reports, the man said he had stopped to shop inside the Palestinian village of Nabi Ilyas when he was jumped by two men who stabbed him. The assailants fled the scene.

The victim was able to drive to a nearby IDF checkpoint after he was attacked in the village, which lies along Route 55.

Magen David Adom paramedics attended to the man before he was evacuated to Meir Hospital in the Israeli town of Kfar Saba for further treatment.

On Sunday evening a Palestinian man turned himself in to the Palestinian security forces claiming responsibility for the attack, Channel 10 reported. Israeli authorities were demanding that the Palestinians hand over the assailant for interrogation, the report said.

That attack was the third of the day carried out at West Bank settlements.

Magen David Adom medics and ambulances at the entrance to the West Bank city of Beitar Illit following a stabbing attack, November 8, 2015. (MDA)
Magen David Adom medics and ambulances at the entrance to the West Bank city of Beitar Illit following a stabbing attack, November 8, 2015. (MDA)

A Palestinian woman stabbed a security guard at the entrance to Betar Illit Sunday morning, lightly wounding a security guard, before she was shot and wounded. The attacker was identified as 22-year-old Halawa Alian of Bethlehem. The IDF said she was treated by medics who then evacuated her to a hospital in Jerusalem.

Two hours earlier, a Palestinian rammed his car into Israelis at a bus stop in the northern West Bank, leaving two Israelis seriously injured and two others lightly wounded. The driver was shot and killed.

Times of Israel staff contributed to this report.

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