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Yaalon: 'IDF Will Find Soldier's Killer'

Defense Minister Moshe Yaalon has promised the Kobi family that the IDF will find and punish the sniper who killed their son.
By Adam Ross
First Publish: 9/23/2013, 12:44 PM

Defense Minister Moshe Yaalon
Defense Minister Moshe Yaalon
Israel news photo: Flash 90

Defense Minister Moshe Yaalon promised Monday morning, that the IDF would catch the Palestinian Authority (PA) sniper who murdered Israeli soldier Gal Kobi Sunday in Hevron.

"I join the grief of the Kobi family after the death of their son. The IDF and security forces will lay their hands on the terrorist and those who sent him and hold them to account," said Yaalon.

First Sergeant Gal Kobi, 20, was fatally shot on Sunday evening while guarding at the Avraham Avinu neighborhood near the Machpelah Cave. The IDF has confirmed that a PA sniper shooting from a PA house was responsible for the killing.

Yaalon warned: "The State of Israel will not tolerate attempts by terrorist organizations or by lone terrorists to harm its citizens or soldiers, and to disrupt their lives. We will act with a strong hand against all such attempts."

The Defense Minister added, "The struggle against terror is long and demands strong resolve from us. We will continue with responsibility, and good judgment, "to protect the State of Israel, its security and citizens." 

US State Department Spokeswoman, Jen Psaki, sent her condemnation of the terror attack in the name of the government in Washington. "Violence and terror of this kind, are unacceptable for the US." She said, adding, "They undermine the efforts to establish a positive atmosphere that can serve as a base for the advancement of peace talks."

Following the attack on Sunday, the IDF imposed a lock-down on Hevron to comb the area and find the perpetrators. During searches, forces arrested two PA Arabs with hunting rifles in the city. During the night Sunday, soldiers arrested ten other wanted suspects across Judea and Samaria. 

The IDF Spokesperson has said the funeral for First Sergeant Gal Kobi will take place on Monday at 4.00 p.m. at the military cemetery in Haifa. 

Hundreds of people have already arrived at Tirat HaCarmel, near Haifa, to comfort the Kobi family.