A 15-year old Palestinian terrorist murdered a telephone company worker - Amos Amit Mantin, 31 - early this afternoon in Baka al-Garbiye, on the pre-'67 side of Green Line Israel.
Two Bezeq company workers had arrived to make phone line repairs, and Amos was sitting in the car when the terrorist approached and fired at him. The victim died of his wounds a short time later, while the terrorist dropped his pistol and tried to flee. The Bezeq guards took off in pursuit, and fired and wounded him. The murderer was taken in serious condition to HaEmek Hospital in Afula.
Police sources say that this is the first time in memory that such a young terrorist had perpetrated a shooting attack of this nature. The funeral of Amos Amit Mantin was held early this evening in the new cemetery in his hometown of Hadera.
Security forces encountered another terrorist force in Baka al-Garbiye late this afternoon; two of the terrorists were killed, two others were apprehended, and no soldiers were hurt. The Arabs were carrying bombs on their persons, which IDF sappers are now neutralizing. Baka al-Garbiye (Upper Baka) is located just outside the northwestern corner of the Shomron, and is adjacent and connected to Baka al-Sharkiye (Lower Baka) on the Yesha side of the Green Line.
It was reported this morning, before the murder, that shootings in the Shomron had increased of late. Four such incidents took place yesterday and last night, though no one was hurt. An Itamar resident was fired upon as he entered his community, and another Israeli car was shot at as he drove through nearby Hawara. Near Bruchin, a car was targeted, as was a bus slightly north of there.
Two Kassam rockets exploded this morning in the Negev city of Sderot - the same city in which five such rockets landed yesterday. Another rocket was launched towards Kibbutz Nir-Am nearby. No one was hurt.
In Gush Katif, where at least nine mortar shells hit Tuesday night and Wednesday, another 11 landed last night and this morning. School buildings and a telephone pole were damaged, but no one was hurt.
The IDF continues to fight terrorism, making several significant arrests. These include: the ringleader of the two terrorists who were caught yesterday before they could detonate a large bomb in Petach Tikvah; a terrorist planning to commit a suicide attack, near Tul Karem; and eight wanted terrorists in Hevron and Bethlehem. Israeli forces demolished the Hevron house of a terrorist leader who was involved in shooting attacks and enlisting suicide bombers.