Avichay Adraee
Avichay AdraeeIDF Spokesperson

Indictments were filed today (Thursday) against Ahmed Zidaat, 24, and Mahmoud Zidaat, 44, for carrying out the stabbing and ramming attack in Ra'anana last month in which a woman was murdered and 18 people were wounded.

According to the indictment, last December, the two planned to assassinate the IDF's Arabic language spokesperson, Lieutenant Colonel Avichay Adraee.

They planned to infiltrate Israel, with Ahmed following Adraee, and if he did not manage to find an opportunity to carry out the assassination, Mahmoud would join him in carrying out an attack together.

The plot began when Ahmed spotted Adraee at a restaurant in Ra'anana in 2022. The two conspirators assumed that he lived in the area and agreed to continue to search for him in that part of the city.

When they could not locate Adraee again, they formulated a backup plan to carry out a mass-casualty ramming and stabbing attack and attempt to kill as many Israelis in Ra'anana as they could.

The plan involved working at a car wash in which they would have easy access to empty vehicles and equipping themselves with a knife or similar sharp object.

On January 15, they both took a vehicle which had been left at the business to be washed and drove to Ra'anana. The attack began when Ahmed saw a pedestrian and ran him over when he identified him as an Israeli Jew. He collided with another vehicle in the act and his car became stuck.

Ahmed then exited his vehicle while holding a knife and stole a vehicle from another driver to continue the attack. He spotted a group of pedestrians on the sidewalk and ran them over. He then got out of the car and repeatedly stabbed one of the victims in the chest until the knife broke.

At the same time, Mahmoud continued driving and looked for a gathering of pedestrians. He spotted a bus stop where about two dozen people were waiting and ran many of them over, crashing into the bus stop in the process before fleeing the scene.

The victims were taken to hospitals in the area. Edna Bluestein, 79, was pronounced dead at the hospital.

Ahmed and Mahmoud were subsequently located and arrested.

They are charged with murder under aggravated circumstances, a terrorist act of attempted murder, a terrorist act of causing significant injury under aggravated circumstances, causing injury under aggravated circumstances out of a racist motive, conspiracy to commit a terrorist act, preparation to commit a terrorist act together, illegal possession of a knife, illegal entry and residence in Israel, use of a forged document under aggravating circumstances, impersonation of another person, driving without a license, and more charges.