Jerusalem Shooter Acted Alone; Previously Suspected of Murder

08:00 Aug 14 2022 Jerusalem ( القُدس , ירושלים ) and Silwan ( سلوان‎)

Scene in Jerusalem. Published by IMEMC News

The site of the shooting attack in Jerusalem, on Sunday. Credit: Ohad Zwigenberg Published by Haaretz

Amir Sidawi. Published by Haaretz

by IMEMC News
Aug 15, 2022

Amir Saidawi, who turned himself in to an Israeli police station after allegedly shooting and injuring eight Israelis on a bus in Jerusalem Sunday, has a long criminal history including having previously been suspected of murder.

Saidawi had been suspected of murder in a crime committed in 2015, but was instead convicted of causing serious bodily harm. He was sentenced to eight years in prison, but was released after 5 years, in 2020. He is 26 years old, from East Jerusalem.

On Sunday August 14th, Saidawi allegedly shot at Israelis in two separate locations – first at a bus, in which two adult males were wounded, and then opened fire again, wounding another six people, four of whom are family members from the United States.

Israeli police say they believe Saidawi acted alone, and that he is not associated with any armed groups.

The attack comes just a week after Israeli forces launched a massive invasion of Gaza, killing 43 people, including 15 young children. Gaza is one of the most crowded places on Earth, and Israeli attempts to engage in extrajudicial assassinations there by firing missiles at residential buildings usually result in many civilians being killed and maimed.

updated from:

Eight Israelis Injured In Shooting Incident In Jerusalem

Aug 14, 2022 at 08:58

Israeli sources said eight Israelis were injured in a shooting attack in occupied Jerusalem, including two in serious conditions.

Update: Israeli media outlets said a 27-year-old Palestinian from East Jerusalem turned himself in to police following ongoing searches for him throughout the night.

An Israeli Police spokesperson said the man was moved to an interrogation facility, and his gun was confiscated.

The Quds News Network said the young man has been identified as Amir Saidawi.

According to Israeli reports, the shooter opened fire at an Israeli bus in two different areas, on HaShalom Street, and near the Old City, before fleeing the scene.

Israeli medics said they provided treatment to eight Israelis, including two who suffered serious wounds; one of them is a pregnant woman who sustained gunshot wounds to the stomach, and a man with gunshot wounds to the head and neck, according to Israeli hospitals treating the injured.

The woman, in her thirties, underwent surgery at Shaare Zedek Medical Center; her baby’s condition was described as serious-but-stable.

The Israeli army invaded and ransacked dozens of homes in Silwan town, in Jerusalem, interrogated scores of Palestinians while inspecting their ID cards, and abducted many young men.

Among the abducted Palestinians are Asma’ Shiokhy, her sons Monatser and Karim, and her daughter mother Asma’.

The soldiers also abducted Maher Sarhan, the son of Samer Sarhan who was killed by a private Israeli security guard in the year 2010.

After the shooting, dozens of Israeli soldiers invaded Silwan town, south of the Al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem, reportedly looking for the shooter.

The Wadi Hilweh Information Center In Silwan (Silwanic) said dozens of soldiers and police officers invaded the town, especially the al-Bustan neighborhood, and initiated massive searches after closing and isolating the area.

On Saturday, Medical sources reported that a Palestinian child from Beit Ummar town, north of the southern West Bank city of Hebron, lost his eye after Israeli soldiers shot him with a rubber-coated steel bullet.

The child was shot by a soldier in the fortified military tower at the main entrance of the refugee camp when dozens of Palestinians marched against the seriously escalating Israeli violations, including the recent offensive on Gaza, the killing of a Palestinian in Hebron, and the assassination of the three Palestinians in Jenin.

The number of Palestinians killed by Israeli missiles and shells during the three-day offensive on Gaza (Friday-Saturday-Sunday – August 5, 6, and 7) to 47 Palestinians, including one elder, three women, and fifteen children. The number of wounded Palestinians is 360, including 19 elders, 58 women, and 151 children.

Eight Wounded in Jerusalem Bus Shooting Attack; Suspect Turns Himself In

A 26-year-old East Jerusalem resident has turned himself in six hours after the attack that wounded eight, including four American citizens

by Nir Hasson, Jack Khoury ,Yael Freidson, Josh Breiner, and Ben Samuels for Haaretz
Aug 14, 2022

Eight people were wounded in a shooting attack in Jerusalem on Sunday, including a pregnant woman who was forced into an emergency delivery.

A 26-year-old East Jerusalem resident has turned himself in at a police station in the city six hours after the attack.

The gunman opened fire on a bus carrying Jewish worshippers near the Western Wall, seriously wounding two riders, including a 26-weeks-pregnant woman.

The suspect was identified as Amir Sidawi, an East Jerusalem resident who holds Israeli citizenship and served five years in prison over a stabbing attack. He is not affiliated with any organized group and while police estimate that he was acting alone, a senior officer expressed concern that the manhunt will inspire copycat attacks.

According to a police source, the police and Shin Bet discovered the attacker's identity at around 4 A.M., and began to gather around his home in the East Jerusalem neighborhood of Silwan, as well as the addresses of his family members living in the area. The attacker tried to ask for help from relatives but realized that the police were closing in on him. He ultimately took a taxi to the Moriah police station, the source said, where he turned himself in.

A taxi driver who drove Sidawi without knowing he was the assailant told Galey Israel Radio: "He stopped me on the street, asked me if I was available, spoke good Hebrew and got in. I noticed he was a little scared. I dropped him off at the police and suddenly after I drove 400 meters away (1300 ft.), police cars came behind me."

The driver added that the policeman told him "God loves you". He turned around and saw the gun with the bullets in the back seat. "I could have gotten a bullet in the head. A miracle happened to me."

Sidawi's father, Anan, told Haaretz he doesn't believe his son actually committed the attack. After he was released from jail "he said he doesn't want to go back there in any way," the father said. "It just doesn't make sense... He would never have done such a thing."

Prime Minister Yair Lapid said that security forces were working to catch the "despicable terrorist," and that they "will not stop until he is caught. All those who wish us ill shall know that they will pay a price for hurting civilians."

"I stopped the bus at the King David's Tomb station, the bus was full. We opened the ramp for someone on a wheelchair, and then the shooting started. Everyone got down on the floor, screaming. I tried to escape, but the bus couldn't drive with the ramp open," the bus driver, Daniel Kanievsky, told Kan public radio.

Among the wounded is a family of four from Brooklyn, New York. The father is hospitalized in serious condition and under ventilation.

"We can confirm that U.S. citizens were among the victims. We are gathering further information. Due to privacy concerns, we will not have further comment," the U.S. Embassy spokesperson said.

N.Y. governor 'horrified'

The U.S. ambassador to Israel, Tom Nides, said on Sunday that he was "deeply saddened" by the attack, adding that the embassy will continue to monitor the situation. "I've spoken with the families and will keep them in my prayers," he said.

New York Governor Kathy Hochul said she was "horrified" by the attack and that a family of New Yorkers had been impacted, adding that her team is in touch with the State Department to assist however possible.

New York Attorney General Letitia James and Democratic candidate for New York's 10th Congressional district Daniel Goldman added their prayers for the wounded family, said to be from the Satmar Hassidic community in Williamsburg.

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer of New York said his office was in contact with U.S. and Israeli authorities, as well as Jewish leaders in Brooklyn "to offer any assistance I can."

"The news of a Brooklyn family being injured in a terror attack in Jerusalem hits too close to home," he said in a statement. "It is a deeply disturbing and despicable act that deserves to be fully condemned and for the perpetrators to be brought to justice."

Hamas, Islamic Jihad, and the Al-Aqsa Martyrs’ Brigades praised the attack. It is "a natural response to the aggression of the occupation soldiers and the crimes of the settlers against the Palestinian people and the holy places," the Hamas' spokesperson said.

Police Commissioner Kobi Shabtai praised the security forces for their fruitful collaboration that led to the capture of the assailant. "The moment the terrorist realized that the high presence of combined forces of the Jerusalem District, Border Police and the Shin Bet, would leave him no choice, he turned himself in."

A previous version of this story incorrectly stated that the newborn baby was killed. The pregnant woman was forced to deliver an emergency birth.

Amir Sidawi shot and injured 8 Israelis 8/14/2022
Asma’ Shiokhy, her sons Monatser and Karim, her daughter [mother?] Asma’, and Maher Sarhan detained 8/14/2022
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