Israeli forces demolish home of Palestinian gunman

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Jan. 25 (UPI) — Hundreds of Israeli forces descended upon a Palestinian refugee camp in East Jerusalem early Wednesday, and demolished the home of a Palestinian gunman who fatally shot an Israel Defense Forces soldier in October, authorities said.

The operation targeted the home of Udai Tamimi, the man accused of killing Sgt. Noa Lazar on the night of Oct. 8 in a shooting.

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Israel Police published video of Wednesday’s operation, showing hundreds of officers storming the Suafat refugee camp and using power tools to destroy the concrete former home of Tamimi.

Authorities said two officers were injured in the operation when masked terrorists lobbed pipe bombs at them and an armed man was killed after pointing what was believed to be a weapon at security forces.

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It was later determined that the suspect was a minor, identified by the Palestinian health ministry as 17-year-old Mohammed Ali, and the weapon was an imitation.

“After forces in the field provided initial first aid the suspect was determined deceased,” Israel Police said in a statement. “During EOD inspection of the weapon, which was in the hands of the suspect, the weapon was determined to be an imitation firearm.”

Officers also had molotov cocktails and rocks hurled at them and “responded accordingly,” police said.

Israel Police said 300 security forces personnel, comprised of Israel Defense Forces soldiers and border guard and police officers, participated in the operation.

“This activity also conveys an important and significant message to anyone who thinks in their hearts to carry out a terrorist attack in the future,” Jerusalem District Police Commander Doron Turgeman said in a statement. “We are committed to continuing to act on all levels and with all the tools at our disposal, for a determined and uncompromising fight against terrorists and terrorism for the safety of the citizens of Israel.”

Lazar, an 18-year-old resident of Bat Hefer, was killed last year while working a checkpoint near the Suafat refugee camp.

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Officials said a terrorist had opened fire on the checkpoint at close range, hitting Lazar. A civilian guard was critically injured.

Tamimi, a Palestinian, was killed nearly two weeks later while conducting another shooting near a West Bank settlement on Oct. 19.

As part of its policy, Israel regularly demolishes the homes of Palestinians accused of conducting terrorist attacks, according to The Times of Israel.