‘QUICK THINKING’: Israeli officers praised for killing terrorist, even while on ground

While many politicians commended the swift actions of Border Police officers who responded to Saturday’s terror attack, Joint List MKs called their actions a “war crime.”

By World Israel News Staff

The two Border Police offers who shot and killed the terrorist responsible for Saturday’s stabbing attack in Jerusalem were given back their weapons on Sunday following an interrogation which has caused a ripple among Israel’s politicians.

In police footage of the event, the terrorist can be seen running towards a 20-year-old ultra-Orthodox man, before violently attacking him with a knife.

Border Police can then be seen running towards the scene, when the terrorist, 25-year-old Mohammed Shawkat Salima, attempts to then stab them. The officers appear to shoot the terrorist to the ground, and then again when he tries to get back up.

The moment in question is when they shoot him once more before another officer on the scene appears to signal them to stop.

Border Police Commander Amir Cohen met on Sunday with the officers, L.-Cpl. ‘S’ and St.-Sgt.-Maj. ‘L,’ during which he praised their actions. 

Cohen told the officers that they acted “With determination, quick-thinking and professionalism to prevent the terrorist from harming you and other civilians in the area.”

Israel Police Chief Kobi Shabtai and Public Security Minister Omer Bar Lev also expressed their support for the officers. 

Bar Lev said that “A second or two after the first shooting the police officers needed to decide whether the terrorist might activate a suicide bomb. When in doubt, there is no doubt.”

Prime Minister Naftali Bennet said that the officers responded, “Exceptionally well, exactly as they are expected to do in such situations.” 

He added that the officers deserve, “Full appreciation and support.”

Opposition Head Benjamin Netanyahu wrote on Twitter that he “Commends the actions” of the Border Police who neutralized the terrorist.

However, Joint List MKs objected.  

Joint List MK Aida Touma-Suleiman said the policemen had executed the man “When he no longer posed a threat.” He added that it is because of the occupation that such a reality exists. 

The incident was also called “An extrajudicial execution,” by Joint List MK Ofer Cassif, who added that, “Shooting an injured person lying on the ground when he is no longer a danger, regardless of his actions, is a war crime.”

Palestinians later arrived at the scene of the terror attack and began rioting. Police responded with stun grenades and other measures in order to break up the protesters. 

Meanwhile, the victim of the incident remains hospitalized in stable condition at Jerusalem’s Shaare Zedek Medical Center with stab wounds in his back and neck.