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Monday, July 19, 2004

ISRAEL


Palestinian Terrorists Murder Senior Israeli Judge in Ramat Hasharon

Faced with new level of terrorism, Government calls for calm

Arutz Sheva: Tel Aviv District Court Justice Adi Azar, 49, was murdered in front of his Tel Aviv home a short time ago. Yasser Arafat’s Fatah organization is claiming responsibility.
 
Tel Aviv Police Chief Yossi Sidbon reports that a gunman traveling on a motorcycle fired three shots at Justice Azar while he was seated in front of his home on Hatzorfim Street in the Ramat HaSharon area of Tel Aviv. Azar was gravely wounded and pronounced dead on the scene by Magen David Adom emergency medical service personnel a short time later.
 
The al-Aqsa Brigade of Fatah is claiming responsibility for the attack, linking it to today’s murder of senior Hizbullah terrorist Alab Awalli in a Beirut suburb. Hizbullah blamed Israel for the attack, vowing revenge.
 
Justice Azar became the first judge in the State of Israel to have been murdered. Police immediately closed down the area of the attack and set up roadblocks in a wider area in the hope of apprehending the assailant. Police are not confirming or denying the validity of the Fatah message claiming responsibility for the attack, releasing bits of information as the investigation begins to move forward.
 
The reaction from government ministers and other public officials is one of shock, anger, and outrage, declaring if it is indeed terrorism, the murder represents a new level of terror in Israel.
 
Knesset Speaker Ruby Rivlin warned that we must not be too hasty to eulogize democracy and law & order in Israel, calling for calm to permit police and Shin Bet agents to piece together the evidence available and move ahead in the case.