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      Arab MK: Truck Attack 'a Regular Accident'

      Incident in which Arab driver hit cars along two-kilometer route, attacked bystanders was “regular accident,” says Arab MK, driver's family.
      By Maayana Miskin
      First Publish: 5/15/2011, 5:19 PM / Last Update: 5/15/2011, 5:21 PM

      Flash 90

      The incident Sunday morning in which an Arab truck driver ran into cars and buildings, leaving a two-kilometer trail of death and destruction, then attacked bystanders with blunt objects while screaming “Allah is great,” was “a regular traffic accident,” MK Ibrahim Sarsur (Ra'am Ta'al) claimed Sunday afternoon.

      “I denounce the attempts made by Israeli journalists and public and official sources to accuse the young man Islam Ibrahim Issa of Kfar Kassam of perpetrating this morning's traffic accident in Tel Aviv on purpose,” Sarsur said in a statement to the media.

      “It saddens me that official Jewish circles often rush to bring up the subject of security when it comes to traffic accidents.... just because they are connected to Arabs,” he added.

      Issa's family issued a similar statement. “He must have been tired,” his mother told Ynet. “The truck was his job, it wasn't an attack... My son doesn't kill Jews,” she said, adding that the destruction caused by her son was the result of “a regular accident.”

      Eyewitnesses to Sunday morning's “accident” reported that Issa continued to ram into cars and buildings for several minutes, and “didn't even dream of stopping.” When he finally came to a stop after hitting a school, he jumped from the truck, screamed “Allah is great” and began to beat people with a traffic light that had fallen in the earlier chaos.

      He managed to escape two passersby who tackled him, and was stopped only when dozens of witnesses joined together to grab him and hold him until police arrived.

      Aviv Morag, 27, was killed in the attack, and 17 other people were wounded.

      Police have not yet declared the incident a terrorist attack. A spokesman said Sunday that the leading theory in an ongoing investigation is that Issa perpetrated a terrorist attack, but added, “We are currently investigating the matter, and we will be able to determine what happened here only after the investigation is complete.”