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Teen girl charged with terrorist act over stabbing of Haifa man

15-year-old allegedly wanted ‘to harm a person of Jewish origin’ in wake of death of Palestinian said to be her boyfriend

A knife used in a stabbing in Haifa, April 15, 2022. (Israel Police)
A knife used in a stabbing in Haifa, April 15, 2022. (Israel Police)

Prosecutors on Monday filed charges against a teenage girl for stabbing an Israeli man in Haifa last month amid a spate of terror attacks.

The 15-year-old was arrested after stabbing and moderately wounding the man on April 15. Police have said her father had alerted authorities of her intentions shortly before the attack.

The minor, whose name is barred from publication, was charged with a terrorist act of aggravated sabotage and possessing a knife for racist motives.

According to the indictment, the teen took an increasing interest in religion and the Temple Mount ahead of the attack, which came hours after Palestinians and police clashed at the Jerusalem holy site.

It also noted that she had heard the same morning that a Palestinian she corresponded with had died of wounds sustained while trying to attack Israeli security forces in Jenin. A report last week identified the Palestinian as her boyfriend.

At least 26 Palestinians have been killed in clashes with Israeli soldiers during raids in the West Bank in recent weeks, including the ostensible boyfriend, 17-year-old Shawkat Kamal Abed from Kafr Dan, who was critically hurt on April 14 during clashes with Israeli troops in the town near Jenin, according to Palestinian media reports.

Prosecutors said that the day of the attack, the girl took several knives from home and told a friend she wanted to die a “martyr” while intending “to harm a person of Jewish origin,” which she then set out to do. She allegedly asked her younger brother to film her before leaving and hoped she would be shot as security forces responded.

Police officers at the scene of a suspected terror stabbing in Haifa, on April 15, 2022. (Shir Torem/Flash90)

After reaching a Haifa park, the suspect searched for a Jewish target and upon spotting Aleksi Yisrael Aidelman on a bench, hit him in the head with a brick and then repeatedly attempted to stab him, according to the indictment, which said the 47-year-old victim was stabbed twice.

She allegedly yelled out pro-Palestinian slogans during the attack, such as “Palestine is ours and will remain ours.”

The indictment said that police then arrived at the scene together with the teen’s father, who took the knife from her before officers arrested her.

Aidelman was taken to the hospital for his wounds and was released the next day. The hospital said he suffered several superficial wounds that did not require surgery.

The incident came during heightened tensions in Israel and the West Bank, with 16 people killed in a string of terror attacks, including most recently a shooting over the weekend in which a security guard was killed outside the Ariel settlement.

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