IDF said to arrest cousin of Tel Aviv terrorist in West Bank raid

Israel Defense Force troops have arrested the cousin of the terrorist who carried out the deadly attack in Tel Aviv earlier this month, Palestinian media reports said late Friday.

The raid was carried out in the village on the outskirts of Jenin in the northern West Bank, the reports said, identifying the man as Ahmad A-Sa’ad, a cousin of Ra’ad Hazem who killed three people when he opened fire on a busy Tel Aviv bar.

There was no immediate confirmation from the IDF, which has made several attempts to arrest Hazem’s family members, including opening fire on a car in which his brothers were traveling.

Israeli security forces have sought to arrest the father and brother of Hazem for their alleged involvement in the attack. Hazem’s father, Fathi, is a former security prisoner who previously served as an officer in the Palestinian Authority’s security services in Jenin. He has praised his son for the killings and refused an Israeli summons for questioning.

Hazem killed three people and wounded several others when he opened fire on a Tel Aviv bar on April 7.

He was killed hours later in an exchange of fire with security forces in nearby Jaffa after a massive all-night manhunt.

Ra’ad Hazem, 29, from the Jenin area, the terrorist who carried out a deadly shooting at a Tel Aviv bar on April 7 2022. (Courtesy)

Tensions have risen sharply between Israel and the Palestinians in recent weeks against the backdrop of repeated terror attacks in Israeli cities that left 14 dead.

The army has stepped up its West Bank activities in an attempt to crack down on the spiraling violence.

Police and rescue workers at the scene of a terror attack at the Ilka Bar in Tel Aviv, April 7, 2022. (Avshalom Sassoni/FLASH90)

Tensions have further spiraled in recent days following violent clashes between Palestinian rioters and police on the Temple Mount in Jerusalem, leading to the injury of dozens of Palestinians and several police officers.

There has also been rocket fire from the Gaza Strip, including two rockets fired Friday.

Hamas and other Gaza-based terror groups have repeatedly invoked the flashpoint holy site as a red line. Police actions to quell riots there last year were among the triggers of an 11-day war in Gaza last May.

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