Israeli Policeman Killed in Car-Ramming During Violent Demonstration
JNS.org — An Israeli policeman was killed Wednesday and several others were wounded when an Israeli-Arab terrorist rammed a car into a crowd of officers during violent clashes with Bedouins over home demolitions in the country’s southern Negev region.
Advanced Staff Sgt. Maj. Erez Levi, 34, was killed when a man police have identified as Yaqoub Mousa Abu Al-Qia’a — an active member of an Islamist terror group — sped toward security forces stationed at the village of Umm al-Hiran. Al-Qia’a was shot and killed at the scene.
Earlier Wednesday, a large contingent of police officers arrived at Umm al-Hiran to help carry out a court order to demolish illegal structures in the village. The security forces were met with violent resistance from residents, who fired live bullets, while police responded with rubber bullets and smoke bombs. There have been unconfirmed reports that one protester was killed.
Arab Joint List faction leader MK Ayman Odeh — who was participating in the demonstrations — was struck in the head by what he claims was an officer’s sponge-tipped bullet. He was taken to the Soroka Medical Center in Beersheba for treatment, where doctors said they could not definitively state the cause of Odeh’s injury, but police have said they believe he was actually hit by a stray rock thrown by a protester.
“We are in the midst of a terrible incident in which a police officer, Sgt. Maj. Erez Levi, may his memory be a blessing, was murdered by a terrorist in a despicable attack,” Israeli President Reuven Rivlin said in a statement.
Rivlin appealed to leaders of Israel’s Arab sector to “fight terrorism with a strong hand and without compromise, and we must contain its evil roots wherever they are.”