‘Bennett is doing the opposite of what he previously claimed, that terrorists’ bodies should not be returned because it harms state security,’ said Israeli MK.
By World Israel News Staff
Two Arab-Israeli men who were shot dead after perpetrating a deadly terror attack in Hadera in late March were quietly buried in their hometown early Monday morning.
The bodies were held for some six weeks by security agencies prior to being returned to their families.
Ayman and Ibrahim Agbariya, two cousins from the northern Arab-Israeli city of Umm Al-Fahm, killed two Border Police officers in an unprovoked attack that was widely believed to have been ISIS-inspired.
Immediately after the attack, security forces declined to hand over the men’s bodies for burial, which is in line with general Israeli policy. The delayed burial is thought to serve as a bargaining chip against terror groups.
Israeli authorities also reportedly feared that an immediate funeral after the men were killed in a shoot-out would lead to incitement and inspire further copycat attacks.
According to a report from Walla News, the police agreed to return the bodies only after the families promised to limit the funerals to a maximum of 50 mourners, hold the burials in the early hours of the morning, and prohibit the display of any flags or banners at the event.
However, Walla noted that some at the funeral did chant pro-terror slogans.
“The Bennett-Abbas-Hamas government did not destroy the terrorists’ homes from Hadera and also returned the terrorists’ bodies to their families for burial. That’s not how you defeat terrorism – that’s how you encourage it,” said Herzl Hajaj, whose daughter Shir was killed in an attack together with another three IDF soldiers in January 2017, TPS reported.
Member of Knesset Avi Maoz (Religious Zionism) stated Monday morning when he stated that “the government of the extreme left, led by Naftali Bennett and Yair Lapid, continues to encourage Arab terrorism.”
“Instead of imposing sanctions on the families of the terrorists to create deterrence and fight terrorism, Bennett and Lapid are fighting for the integrity of the coalition so that the government does not fall. The people of Israel are disgusted with this leadership. The people of Israel want a Jewish-national government,” he declared, according to TPS.
“Bennett is doing the opposite of what he previously claimed, that terrorists’ bodies should not be returned because it harms state security,” MK Itamar Ben Gvir (Religious Zionism) declared.
The terrorists’ hometown of Umm Al-Fahm has long been a hotbed of Islamist extremism that has proved challenging for the Israeli government to manage.
In May 2021, tens of thousands of Umm Al-Fahm residents attended a funeral for a local teen who was shot during a confrontation with police, as widespread rioting during Operation Guardian of the Walls raged throughout Arab communities in Israel.
In 2017, a funeral in Umm Al-Fahm for two terrorists who shot and killed Border Police officers on the Temple Mount attracted a crowd of hundreds of thousands who called for revenge and further attacks.
Sheikh Ra’ed Salah, the founder of the now-outlawed Islamic Movement in Israel, is from the city.