Parents of Baby Terror Victim Publish Photo of Smiling Son, Reject False Rumors About His Condition
The parents of 18-month-old Yotam Sitboun who was wounded in a terrorist attack in Jerusalem earlier this week published a photograph of their child smiling on Friday, seeking to dispel rumors about their son’s health.
“It’s important for us to clarify: false pictures and rumors about Yotam’s health were published,” the parents said in a statement released by Israeli news website nrg. “We are asking others to respect our privacy on this matter. Yotam is alive, he is smiling and this is a great light for us. We have the utmost faith that soon, God willing, we will be able to return to our lives fully recovered.”
Yotam Sitboun was among 14 Israelis who were wounded, some more critically than others, when an east Jerusalem man with ties to Hamas rammed his car into a crowd of people waiting at a Jerusalem bus stop on Monday.
His father, Binyamin Sitboun, told Hebrew news outlets that medical staff were working to save their son’s leg, which was badly damaged in the attack. The parents did not comment on their child’s leg in their message on Friday.
“It’s very important and moving to us,” said the parents, thanking others for showing support and praying for their son.
“The nation of Israel is a great nation. Jews from around the world pray together with us and we feel this and it gives us and Yotam much strength. We are asking for you to keep praying and to light the Sabbath candles in honor of his recovery,” the parents said.
Monday’s car-ramming attack was part of an ongoing wave of violence that has been terrorizing Israel for months, and which Israeli defense officials say will likely continue for some time.
In October, a terrorist rammed his car into a Jerusalem bus stop, killing one, before exiting and lunging at victims with a knife. Israeli police on Friday said they had arrested a man who attempted to ram his car into Israeli security forces at the Qalandiya checkpoint between Jerusalem and Ramallah.
Like the media spin that developed around Sitboun, rumors also swirled around a 13-year-old Palestinian boy who was shot committing a stabbing attack in Jerusalem. Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas had claimed the stabber had been executed on the street, prompting Israel to respond by releasing photographs of the boy alive and being treated in an Israeli hospital.