The IDF and the GSS (General Security Service) launched a joint operation early Thursday morning to apprehend Mohammed Abad Altif Hasin Halil, 26. Halil was hiding in the village of Nazlat A-Wasta, north of Tul Karem.

Originally from Tul Karem, Halil took part in planning and facilitating the Tel Aviv boardwalk bombing two weeks ago, in which five Israelis were killed. He also took part in rigging a vehicle full of explosives meant to be detonated just a few days after the Tel Aviv attack by crashing it into a busload of soldiers. The truck-bomb was uncovered in the Arrabeh area on February 28 and neutralized.

An IDF Paratrooper force, together with members of the Oketz dog-handling unit, encircled Halil's house early this morning and repeatedly called for him to come out. Everyone in the house left, with the exception of Halil.

When Halil continued to refuse to give himself up, the IDF force sent a search dog towards the house. Halil, hiding in the attic, saw the dog approaching and shot it, killing it on the spot. Halil then began shooting at the soldiers surrounding the house. The soldiers returned fire and hurled hand grenades at the house in an attempt to drive Halil out. Finally, an IDF bulldozer began to demolish the structure, but Halil did not take advantage of his last chance to leave, and he was killed in the destruction. His body and pistol were recovered from the rubble.

Nafez Azzam, an Islamic Jihad terrorist chief in Gaza, told the Associate Press that the killing of Halil “does not encourage us to continue the state of calmness that currently exists on the ground. The resistance will continue in the face of the aggression against our people."

IDF forces also apprehended two terrorists north of Jenin, one from Hamas and the other from Islamic Jihad. A wanted man was arrested in Hevron as well.

South of Jenin, Arabs opened fire on an IDF position today, failing to cause injury.

Chaos in the Palestinian Authority resumed today in Ramallah. At around noon, 20 armed terrorists from Fatah’s Al-Aksa Brigades interrupted a meeting of 1,200 members of the Fatah party, vandalizing the hall, ordering attendees out of the building and shooting in the air. Their gripe was that they had not been invited to the meeting. Fatah is headed by PA chairman Abu Mazen.