Palestinian terrorist Ismail Abu Aram in court on August 28, 2017. (Roy Alima/Flash90) (Roy Alima/Flash90)
Palestinian terrorist Ismail Ibrahim Ismail Abu Aram

The terrorist who stabbed and critically injured a father of five in central Israel was inspired to kill a Jew during a pilgrimage to Mecca.

A Palestinian terrorist who stabbed a supermarket worker in the city of Yavne on August 2 decided to carry out the attack while on a visit to Saudi Arabia, according to an indictment filed at the Lod Magistrates court on Monday.

Ismail Abu Aram, a 19-year-old from the village of Yata in the Hebron district, stabbed Niv Nehama, a 43-year-old father of five, at the Shufersal Deal supermarket with a 15-centimeter blade he had concealed in his trousers. Nehama barely survived the attack and was hospitalized with life-threatening injuries.

According to the indictment, Abu Aram spent 12 days in Mecca, Saudi Arabia, during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan in June. It was there, he told police, that he decided to “fulfill his duty to jihad [religious war]” and to “kill a Jew.”

Abu Aram originally planned to kill a former employer, but when he could not find the man, he decided to enter a supermarket, steal a knife and attack a random victim. He entered the store, stole a knife from the kitchen department and hid it in his trousers. When he saw assistant manager Nehama alone in one of the aisles, Abu Aram attacked, stabbing him multiple times in the head, neck and chest.

Despite sustaining critical wounds, Nehama fought back and Abu Aram fled, before being caught by passers-by who had chased after him outside the supermarket.

Nehama was released from hospital earlier this week.


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