JERUSALEM (AP) — The Israeli military early Saturday demolished the family home of a Palestinian who it says stabbed a Jewish mother to death in front of her children, in one of the most grisly killings in an eight-month wave of violence.
The military said its forces entered the West Bank village of Yatta to knock down the family residence of Morad Bader Abdullah Adais. The military says he killed Dafna Meir, a mother of six, in her home in the Jewish settlement of Otniel in January. He fled the scene and was later arrested.
Israel says it carries out housing demolitions to deter future attacks. The Palestinians consider it a form of collective punishment.
Over the last eight months, Palestinians have carried out dozens of attacks on civilians and security forces, mostly stabbings, shootings and car ramming assaults that have killed 32 Israelis and two Americans. About 200 Palestinians have been killed during that time, most identified as attackers by Israel. The assaults were once near-daily incidents but they have become less frequent in recent weeks.
On Wednesday, however, two Palestinians from Yatta opened fire in Tel Aviv's Sarona district, a popular shopping and restaurant area, killing four Israeli civilians.
The military arrested several people in connection to that attack, froze 83,000 Palestinian travel permits to Israel and imposed checkpoints to restrict movement in and out of the village where the Palestinian gunmen were from. It also imposed a three-day closure of the West Bank that coincided with the Jewish holiday of Shavuot.