IDF captures elusive terrorist behind deadly shooting in Samaria

On Tuesday morning, Israeli security forces captured Asam Barghouti, the terrorist behind the Givat Assaf attack in Samaria.

By David Isaac, World Israel News

On Tuesday morning, Israeli security forces captured Asam Barghouti, the Palestinian Arab responsible for the terrorist attack at the Givat Assaf junction north of Jerusalem, who killed two Israeli soldiers and wounded another, as well as a resident of the nearby town of Beit El.

The capture of Barghouti was carried out in a joint operation of the Israel Defense Forces, the Shin Bet (or “Israeli Security Services”) and Israel’s Yamam, a counter-terrorist unit that also carries out police duties akin to SWAT in the U.S.

The hunt took nearly a month before Barghouti was finally tracked down to his hiding place in a home of someone who was helping him.

Israeli security forces say that Barghouti was planning other attacks and they also found a Russian-style Kalashnikov rifle, large quantities of ammunition and night-vision devices.

Weapon found with Asam Barghouti. (Yamam)

“We had no doubt that we should get to Assam Barghouti and bring about his arrest,” the head of Yamam said. “The cooperation of SWAT with different security elements including general security services is what leads time and again to fantastic operational successes and is what will continue to ensure that no low-life murderer will escape from the long arm of Yamam.”

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On Dec. 13, Barghouti shot and killed Sgt. Yosef Cohen and Staff Sgt. Yoval Mor Yosef at the Givat Assaf junction. Both soldiers served as infantrymen in the IDF’s Netzah Yehuda Kfir Brigade, a special unit for religious soldiers.

Barghouti also wounded IDF soldier Netanel Filber, who remains in serious condition. A civilian woman was also wounded in the attack.

Barghouti was also involved in the attack with his brother, Salam, on the bus station near the town of Ofra in the Binyamin region on Dec. 9. In that attack, seven Israelis were injured including a pregnant woman who lost her unborn child.

Salam Barghouti was eventually tracked down and killed when he attempted to escape the IDF’s dragnet. His brother, the just-captured Asam, carried out the terror shooting attack at Givat Assaf the day after his brother was killed.

The parents of Staff Sgt. Yoval Mor Yosef, however, expressed disappointment that Asam Barghouti was captured alive.

Staff Sgt. Yosef’s mother, Ilanit, told newspaper Israel Hayom, “He wasn’t captured dead, he was taken alive. This disappoints us. This isn’t a person who needs to remain alive.”

“My son is dead and a good soldier like my son … they were killed and he sits alive, how? In what state does this happen I ask myself all the time. Where does a thing like this happen? He sits alive and now he’ll be put in a hotel,” she said.

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