Two Soldiers Killed in Binyamina Suicide Bombing Attack

A lone suicide bomber blew himself up at a soldiers’ bus stop outside the Binyamina train station at about 7:30pm Monday night. As a result, two soldiers, Avi Ben-Harush and Chanit Arami were killed.


A lone suicide bomber blew himself up at a soldiers’ bus stop outside the Binyamina train station at about 7:30pm Monday night. As a result, two soldiers, Avi Ben-Harush and Chanit Arami were killed. Ten others were injured. One person remains in grave condition and one serious, with the rest described with light injuries. The Islamic Jihad claimed responsibility for the deadly attack, the PA issued statements of condemnation and Israel launched a retaliatory offensive against the PA autonomous areas of Jenin and Tul Karem.

The IDF using primarily tank fire attacked PA security forces installations as well as positions belonging to Arafat’s elite Force 17 terrorist unit in the autonomous areas of Jenin and Tul Karem. The Office of the IDF Spokesman reports that Israeli forces did not enter into areas under PA control, firing only from areas under Israeli control. Military sources point out that the suicide bomber was a Jenin resident affiliated with the Islamic Jihad terrorist organization. Israel Radio reports on Tuesday morning that the retaliatory raid has left most of Tul Karem without electricity.

Defense Minister Binyamin Ben-Eliezer conferred with Prime Minister Ariel Sharon following the attack, reaching a mutual decision to launch a limited retaliatory attack.

It is theorized by police that the lone bomber intended to detonate the explosive device inside the crowded train station but was unable to gain entry due to the heavy police presence and stringent security measures being taken. As a result, he detonated the bomb outside the train station at a soldiers’ bus stop. Two soldiers were killed and a third soldier remains in serious condition.

Staff-Sergeant Avi Ben-Harush, 20, and Corporal Chanit Arami, 19, both from Zichron Yaakov, were killed in the blast. Chanit Arami will be laid to rest at 5:00pm in the military cemetery of that city followed by Avi Ben-Harush at 7:00pm.

Eyewitness testimony indicated the bomber got out of a green Fiat Uno vehicle, apparently a 1987 or 1988 model, and then headed for the train station. The vehicle had other occupants in it, including a female driver with a head covering. Police set up a dragnet in the hope of apprehending the vehicle and its occupants, using cars, special forces and helicopters, but without success.

Israel Police Northern District Commander Yaakov Borovski reported that the terrorist waited by the bus stop until it began filling with persons, then detonating the bomb. Borovski added that there were conflicting reports from eyewitnesses regarding the make, model and color of the car that dropped off the terrorist. The senior police commander stated the investigation will most likely unveil the true picture, adding that it is entirely possible the terrorist arrived in a taxi or the like and was not driven in a private vehicle as reported. Several PA residents found in the area illegally following the blast were taken into custody.

Ten victims of the blast were transported to Hadera’s Hillel Yafeh Hospital. Ben-Harush was in very grave condition and died within a minute or two of his arrival in the emergency room. Hospital officials report receiving nine other victims of the attack with two of them reported in serious condition. Included among the wounded are a mother and infant son. Physicians report the injuries were predictable, as the emergency room of Hillel Yafeh is comprised of a veteran staff that has triaged and treated many terror victims over the past months of the Oslo War. As soon as news of the attack broke, the hospital moved to alert status making necessary preparations to accept the victims. Physicians and other members of the trauma teams, surgical and support staff began making their way to the hospital in anticipation of another night of horror.

One victim, in very serious condition, was taken by helicopter to Haifa’s Rambam Medical Center for more advanced care for reported thoracic injuries.

Islamic Jihad terrorist leaders released a statement claiming responsibility for the deadly attack. The terrorist was 20-year-old Nidal Abu-Shaduq, a resident of the PA village of Bourkin near the PA area of Jenin. The statement explained the attack was in retaliation of the continued “hostilities against the Palestinian people by Israel” as well as for the apprehension of a senior terrorist by undercover IDF units in Bethlehem on Sunday. Terrorist leaders vow there are many more waiting to perpetrate suicide attacks against Israel. PA officials report Israeli forces killed the brother of the suicide bomber last December.

The PA issued an official condemnatory statement, distancing itself from the murders of innocent persons, calling for a cessation of attacks from both sides. The PA reiterated it is committed to the US-brokered cease-fire and the implementation of the Mitchell Committee recommendations, calling upon Israel to do the same.

PA commanders ordered all major facilities throughout Yesha to be evacuated following the attack, in anticipation of a major Israeli reprisal.

The United State Department of State condemned the attack and the murder of innocent persons. The State Department then issued its standard message against Israel, calling for restraint. State Department officials continue to equate the terrorist attacks ordered and perpetrated by the PA terrorist forces and Israel’s retaliatory responses following fatal attacks such as this one.

Security forces around the country remain on alert status in light of intelligence community warnings of impending terrorist attacks. Intelligence reports point to additional suicide bombers, attempted kidnappings of soldiers, attacks inside Yesha communities as well as attacks inside Green Line Israel as was seen on Monday night.