Israeli Arab bus-bomber charged with 27 counts of attempted murder

Mohammed Mafarja, 18, is accused of planting hidden bomb on a Tel Aviv bus on the last day of Operation Pillar of Defense

Mafarja reportedly boarded a train to go back to work after he disembarked from the targeted bus

The explosive device was allegedly detonated remotely from the West Bank.

By Israel Hayom Staff

 

An indictment has been filed in the Tel Aviv District Court against the Israeli Arab man suspected of planting a bomb on a Tel Aviv bus on Nov. 21.

The site of a Tel Aviv bus bombing last month. – Photo: KOKO

Mohammed Mafarja, an 18-year-old resident of Taybeh, was charged with aiding the enemy during wartime, conspiring to commit a crime and 27 counts of attempted murder, among other charges.

The blast on Dan Bus No. 142 in Tel Aviv took place on the final day of Israel’s eight-day Operation Pillar of Defense in the Gaza Strip last month. More than two dozen Israelis were wounded in the explosion, most of them lightly.

According to the indictment, Mafarja left the explosive device underneath a seat toward the front of the bus, disembarked in Ramat Gan’s Bursa district and then called Ahmad Musa, a co-conspirator in the West Bank. Several minutes later, Musa set off the device by calling a mobile phone that was attached to the bomb as a detonator. The bomb exploded as the bus was travelling on Shaul Hamelech Street in central Tel Aviv around noon.

Musa was among several Palestinians from the West Bank village of Beit Lakiya to be detained for suspected involvement in the bombing. Law enforcement officials say that Mafarja, Musa and the other arrested individuals were part of a terrorist cell with links to Hamas and Islamic Jihad.

Mafarja was originally from the West Bank but received Israeli citizenship under the family reunification law.

Yedioth Ahronoth reported that after planting the bomb on the bus, Musa boarded a train at Tel Aviv’s Savidor Mercaz station and arrived at his place of work in Modiin early in the afternoon. He was arrested several hours later.

View original Israel Hayom publication at: http://www.israelhayom.com/site/newsletter_article.php?id=6790

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