Supreme Court justice escapes assault in West Bank

Judge David Mintz said to drive off after three Palestinians block his car, approach him with hammers

Stuart Winer is a breaking news editor at The Times of Israel.

Supreme Court judge David Mintz attends a ceremony in Jerusalem, on June 13, 2017. (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)
Supreme Court judge David Mintz attends a ceremony in Jerusalem, on June 13, 2017. (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)

A judge on Israel’s Supreme Court said he escaped a violent assault by three men armed with hammers as he drove on a West Bank highway near his home in the settlement of Dolev on Monday morning.

The Israel Police said in a statement that it received a report of an Israeli resident who was driving through a junction on Route 463 in the central West Bank when his car was blocked by a Palestinian vehicle.

Three men carrying hammers emerged from the vehicle and approached his car, police said, but he managed to drive away.

The driver was identified by Hebrew media reports as Supreme Court justice David Mintz.

Police opened an investigation into the incident.

Mintz reportedly arrived safely at the court, and was set to give a statement later to police.

The incident occurred at a time of increased tensions between Israelis and Palestinians in the West Bank against a backdrop of two deadly attacks.

On Friday, a Palestinian mother of eight was killed when her husband lost control of their car after it was stoned near the Tapuah Junction in the West Bank. The Shin Bet security service opened an investigation on suspicion that Jewish settlers were behind the attack, although there have been no arrests.

Last week two Israelis were shot dead by a Palestinian terrorist in their office at the Barkan Industrial Park, also in the West Bank. Another woman was injured in the shooting. The gunman, Ashraf Na’alowa, is still on the run amid an ongoing manhunt to capture him.

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