IDF captures Palestinian rock-thrower who killed 21-year-old soldier in May

The IDF announced on Sunday night they captured the assailant who murdered a young IDF soldier in mid-May.

By World Israel News Staff

On Sunday evening, the IDF tweeted, “We can confirm that IDF soldiers and Israel’s security services have arrested the assailant who killed 21-year-old Staff Sgt. Amit Ben Yigal during operational activity last month.”

“We will continue in the fight against terror,” the IDF added.

Ben Yigal, a 21-year-old IDF combat soldier, was killed on the morning of May 12 when a rock was thrown by a Palestinian at his head during operational activity in the village of Ya’bad, west of Jenin in northern Samaria.

The operation was almost completed when the incident occurred as the rock was thrown from the roof of the very last house just as the IDF soldiers were leaving the village, the Israeli Army reported.

Ben Yigal’s killer was identified as 49-year-old Nazmi Abu Bakr, a resident of Ya’bad who lived in the building from which the projectile was launched that killed the soldier. According to the Shin Bet, Bakr was one of a handful of initial suspects. He later reportedly confessed to throwing the rock that killed Ben Yigal.

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Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu issued an official statement on Sunday evening commenting, “I would like to commend the IDF, the ISA and the security services for apprehending the reprehensible murderer of the late Amit Ben Yigal. I have given the order to demolish the home of this murderer. Whoever tries to attack us, we will find him, sooner or later. In recent years you have seen that it is sooner.”

Ben Yigal served in the Golani Brigade Reconnaissance Unit. He was posthumously promoted from Staff Sergeant to Sergeant 1st Class.

Amit’s father, Baruch Ben Yigal, told Channel 11 that his son wanted to be in Golani and he had signed off on it. He said Amit was his only child. “I have nothing but him. I can’t even cry. I can’t even digest this terrible disaster,” he said.

After his death, a picture of Amit’s girlfriend circulated on social media showing her sitting on the ground crying. “He promised me he would return over the weekend and he said yesterday he would be careful and he wasn’t careful,” she said.

Ben Yigal was the first IDF soldier to be killed in 2020.