Three suspects arrested over explosives in Jerusalem area

One of the explosives detonated while the suspects were returning to their vehicle.

By Lauren Marcus, World Israel News

Two Palestinian men were arrested by Border Police on Saturday night after allegedly planting explosives near the Qalandiya checkpoint, near Jerusalem.

The Border Police said that two suspects drove to the checkpoint, laid two explosives on the side of the road, and fled.

One of the explosives detonated while the suspects were returning to their vehicle. No damages or casualties were reported.

After a search of the area by Border Police, the two suspects, both residents of Qalandiya, were arrested at a local market. The pair was taken for further questioning.

The Border Police vehicle was pelted with stones by locals, and the forces used crowd dispersal means to return to the checkpoint.

In a separate incident on Saturday evening, Border Police stationed at Rachel’s Tomb, near Bethlehem, spotted someone placing a suspicious package near the holy site.

The Border Police was able to locate the suspect based on their clothing. The package turned out to be an explosive device which did not successfully detonate.

The suspect, a resident of the al-Aza refugee camp in Bethlehem, was arrested and taken for further questioning.

“Border Police are working in the Jerusalem area to strengthen deterrence and thwart terrorism, while increasing the deployment of forces in sensitive places where there have been recent attempts to harm civilians and security forces,” read an official statement from the Border Police.

“The two successful operations over the weekend testify to the determination of the officers who will continue to do everything in their power to arrest the terrorists and bring them to justice.”

Additionally, two Israeli Arabs were arrested at the a-Zaim checkpoint on Saturday evening. A random search of their vehicle turned up an M-16 assault rifle, which was reportedly stolen from an IDF base at the center of the country, and a substantial amount of bullets, ammunition, and cartridges.

The couple was arrested, and the Jerusalem Magistrate Court ordered that they will be held in custody until Monday.