Hours Before Brutal Slaying at Hands of Palestinian Stabber, 13-Year-Old Israeli Girl Performed With Troupe at Dance Recital in Jerusalem
Mere hours before the eighth-grader slaughtered by a Palestinian terrorist on Thursday morning met her untimely and brutal death in her Kiryat Arba home, she was performing in a concert in Jerusalem, the Hebrew press reported.
The manager of the troupe with which 13-year-old Hallel Yaffe Ariel has been dancing for years told reporters that it was due to her being out late the night before that she was still sound asleep when the assailant entered her bedroom and stabbed her repeatedly for several minutes. In addition, as her mother later pointed out, it is now summer vacation, when the kids can stay in bed a bit longer.
“She was a beloved girl,” said Esther Merom, who heads the studio. “The girls who danced with her are completely broken.”
In a chilling twist of fate, Hallel’s mother, Rena Ariel – who had taken her younger children somewhere that morning and was unaware that her daughter was being murdered that very moment – sent a text message to Merom to thank her for the previous evening and tell her how important dance has been to her daughter.
Later, Merom told Channel 2, Rena sent her another message: “Pray for Hallel. She has no pulse.”
An investigation of the horrific incident has revealed so far that the terrorist — 19-year-old Muhammed Taraiyre from the nearby Palestinian village of Bani Naim – managed to infiltrate the Ariel house at the edge of the Givat Charsina neighborhood in the West Bank city and stab Hallel to death.
It turns out that Taraiyre had scaled the gate of the community at 8:44 am, according to security camera footage. Seeing him rush to the Ariel house, the local civilian Rapid Response Team ran after him, but not before he had succeeded in stabbing Hallel 10 times.
When the team arrived at the house, they found Hallel lying in a pool of her own blood. The terrorist, who ambushed them upon their entry, managed to stab and seriously wound one of the rescuers, Yehoshua Gilboa. The other rescuers succeeded ultimately in shooting and killing Taraiyre.
From the Shaare Zedek Medical Center in Jerusalem, where Hallel was rushed by ambulance, as Magen David Adom paramedics tried unsuccessfully to resuscitate her, her weeping mother told Channel 2: “My daughter was simply asleep, calm and serene. She was happy, and a terrorist came to her bed, in Kiryat Arba, and killed her… I want everyone to see our pain and to come console us. Hallel, may your memory be a blessing.”