Teen Terrorist: I Intended to Stab a Soldier

The terrorist who stabbed Eden Atias to death in Afula tells interrogators that his intention from the start had been to murder.

Elad Benari ,

Bus on which Eden Atias was murdered
Bus on which Eden Atias was murdered
Flash 90

The 16-year-old terrorist who stabbed IDF soldier Eden Atias to death in Afula, has told interrogators that his intention from the start had been to murder an Israeli soldier.

According to a report which aired Thursday on Channel 10, the terrorist said that he had entered Israel from the Palestinian Authority-assigned areas of Judea and Samaria because he was looking for work.

"There’s no work in Jenin. My family sent me to find a job," he said, according to Channel 10. "I looked for work in different places. In Nazareth, in Umm Al-Fahm. I thought about trying in Haifa. Everyone is afraid to hire a person without a permit. They’re afraid of the police.”

The terrorist told interrogators that the terror attack was a means for him to protest the imprisonment of his relatives in an Israeli jail.

“I'm angry that no one remembers my uncles who you imprisoned. Israel and the PA do not mention them at all. Who will look after them? Now, after I did what I did, everyone knows about them," he boasted, adding, "But you know, they did not know I was going to do what I did.”

The terrorist, according to the report, said that he was fully aware of his actions. "Yes, I know I killed the soldier. I boarded the bus with the intention of stabbing someone. I saw that everyone had gone off the bus while he stayed on, so I chose him. I stabbed him twice and even a third time,” he declared.

A military court on Thursday extended the terrorist’s remand by 15 days.

The 16-year-old terrorist was identified by the Ma’an news agency, as well as on Hamas internet forums, as Hussein Ghawadra.

PA media reported on Wednesday that IDF troops had raided his home and arrested some of his relatives.

An investigation into the attack has found that the terrorist boarded the bus, which was full of soldiers, and waited until the bus made a stopover at the Afula Bus Station, where most of the passengers typically get off for a few minutes before the trip continues.

The terrorist, seeing that Atias had fallen asleep during the trip, took advantage of the stopover and of the fact that most of the passengers were off the bus, to stab Atias.

Atias, who was critically wounded, was taken to the Haemek Hospital, where he died shortly afterwards. An off-duty IDF commander, meanwhile, pointed his weapon at the terrorist who immediately froze and surrendered.