The mother of the Arab with Israeli citizenship, who was arrested on Thursday for involvement in the terrorist attack on a Tel Aviv bus this week, said on Friday she does not believe her son is guilty.
The man is originally from Beit Lakiya but married an Israeli Arab and today lives in Tayibe, an Arab city located in the Triangle, an area west of Hadera populated mainly by Israeli Arabs, whose towns form a large triangle on the map. The man’s family members live in Tayibe as well, in a neighborhood of the city inhabited primarily by former residents of areas controlled by the Palestinian Authority.
The man was arrested along with several other suspects by the Israel Security Agency (Shin Bet). They used a car belonging to the man's employer in order to transport the explosive device into Tel Aviv. The employer, an Arab from eastern Jerusalem, was unaware of their plan.
The Israeli citizen placed the explosive charge on the bus, and then informed his commander in Beit Lakiya, who dialed the phone and detonated the device.
"I do not believe it. There is no chance my son would ever do such a thing," the suspect's mother stated emphatically in a conversation with Channel 2 News.
"My son goes from work to home and from home to work," added the mother, stressing, "He has no social life and all his friends live out of town at all. He’s a person who has respect for his family and for everyone he meets on the street - even strangers."
"I do not know what exactly is going on, but our lawyer is handling it," said the mother. "I believe he will be released very soon."
MK Ahmed Tibi, himself a resident of Tayibe, told Channel 2 News that he asks “not to generalize against all the residents of the city. This is a family who has been allowed to live in Tayibe and they could have just as easily been residents of Haifa, so you cannot discredit all the residents of Tayibe. I hope his name is made public soon.”
On Friday, the Jerusalem Magistrates Court extended by ten days the remand of the Tayibe resident. Authorities expect more arrests in the case.
(Arutz Sheva’s North American Desk is keeping you updated until the start of Shabbat in New York. The time posted automatically on all Arutz Sheva articles, however, is Israeli time.)