Last night Hallel Yaffa Ariel was asleep in her bed when a 17-year-old Palestinian terrorist wielding a knife stabbed her multiple times. The attack took place in Hebron, Israel, which is in the West Bank. She was taken to a hospital where she died from her wounds. The terrorist was shot by security forces in the neighborhood and posted on his Facebook page before breaking into the home, "Death is a blessing." Ariel's mother described the attack:
“Like all adolescents during summer vacation, my daughter was asleep — tranquil, calm — and a terrorist came and murdered her in her bed,” Rina Ariel, the mother of Hallel Yaffa Ariel, told reporters outside Shaare Zedek Medical Center in Jerusalem where the teenager was taken after sustaining critical injuries in the attack earlier Thursday.
13-yr-old girl wounded in stabbing attack has succumbed to her wounds. pic.twitter.com/H00mKr6XJp— IDF (@IDFSpokesperson) June 30, 2016
This afternoon, the State Department confirmed she is an American citizen, but did not mention who is responsible for her murder.
"We condemn in the strongest possible terms the outrageous terrorist attack this morning in the West Bank where a 13-year-old girl, Hallel Ariel, was stabbed to death in her home. This brutal act of terrorism is simply unconscionable," State Department Spokesman John Kirby released in a statement. "We extend our deepest condolences to her family. We also understand another individual who was responding to the attack was wounded by the attacker. We extend our hopes for a quick and full recovery."
Hundreds of people attended Ariel's funeral this afternoon.
Earlier this year American and West Point graduate Taylor force, who served tours in Iraq and Afghanistan, was stabbed to death in March while on a trip to Israel during his transition out of the U.S. Army.
Seven Americans have been killed by Palestinian terrorists in the past year.
13 year old girl murdered in her sleep in the West Bank this morning is at least the 7th US citizen killed by Pal. terrorists in last yr— Jake Tapper (@jaketapper) June 30, 2016
@OrenKessler— Jake Tapper (@jaketapper) June 30, 2016
Eitan and Naama Henkin, Richard Lakin, Ezra Schwartz, Tuvia Weissman, Taylor Force plus today
Photo credit: Times of Israel