Two heavily armed terrorists opened fire in the town of Hadera north of Tel Aviv Sunday night, killing two Israelis and wounding five. The attackers, Israeli Arabs from a nearby community, were inspired by ISIS, which claimed responsibility for the attack.
Undercover border police officers eliminated the shooters quickly, averting a major disaster. The assailants carried several guns and knives, over 1,000 bullets, and also snatched a rifle from one of their victims.
The two fatalities in the attack are male and female police officers. The wounded, including a child, are still hospitalized.
The latest attack comes after an ISIS-inspired Israeli stabbed and rammed 4 people to death last week in southern Israel. This homegrown terror threat poses a difficult challenge for the security services, as Israeli Arabs can travel freely and are closely familiar with the country, unlike Palestinians who face greater limits and are more strictly monitored.
Israeli security forces are now on the highest alert, and police officers will be setting up roadblocks on major roads, Ynet reported. Large forces raided the terrorists’ hometown of Umm al-Fahm to arrest potential collaborators and other suspects.
Defense officials are looking into placing high-risk Israeli Arabs under administrative detention to prevent more attacks, Ynet said. A small number of individuals were arrested in recent years over links to ISIS. However, some local Arabs also sympathize with Palestinian terror groups and with Hezbollah.
Following the attack, some criticism was voiced over the Shin Bet’s failure to identify and stop the attackers on time. The new wave of terror may require Israel’s security services to revise their model for early detection of lone wolf attackers.