JERUSALEM – Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu slammed the killers of a four-day-old baby murdered in a shooting attack near Ofra as “abhorrent … the most despicable criminals on earth,” ahead of reports that the IDF had arrested a group of Palestinians suspected of carrying out the attack following a shootout in Ramallah.
The baby of Shira Ish-Ran, who was seven months pregnant when she was shot by Palestinian terrorists at a bus stop near the West Bank settlement of Ofra on Sunday, died Wednesday evening following an emergency delivery by doctors at Shaare Zedek hospital in Jerusalem.
After a three-day manhunt, Israeli security forces killed one Palestinian and apprehended several others during a firefight in Ramallah Wednesday night, Israeli media reported, citing Palestinian sources.
Less than an hour before, Netanyahu addressed journalists at a gathering in Jerusalem and vowed to capture the perpetrators of the attack, in which seven people were sprayed with bullets from a passing car.
“We will not rest until we have found the killers and brought them to justice,” Netanyahu said.
“Our hearts are with Shira and Amichai on the loss of their four-day-old baby who does not even have a name. These despicable murderers are the most despicable criminals on earth,” the prime minister added.
A funeral for the baby will be held at the Mount of Olives cemetery in Jerusalem on Thursday morning.
Earlier in the day, doctors at Shaare Zedek said Ish-Ran’s condition had stabilized. She was strong enough to see her baby for the first time Wednesday morning.
President Donald Trump’s Special Mideast Negotiator Jason Greenblatt sent his condolences to the Ish-Ran family and slammed Hamas for describing the attack as “heroic.”
“Absolutely heart-breaking — my thoughts & prayers are with the family of the baby who died today as a result of the despicable terror attack on Sunday. This is an attack Hamas praised as ‘heroic,'” Greenblatt posted on Twitter.
Absolutely heart-breaking – my thoughts & prayers are with the family of the baby who died today as a result of the despicable terror attack on Sunday. This is an attack Hamas praised as “heroic.”
— Jason D. Greenblatt (@jdgreenblatt45) December 12, 2018
Education Minister Naftali Bennett echoed Netanyahu’s description of the murder as “despicable” and called for harsher measures of deterrence.
“A Jewish baby that still hadn’t been named was murdered,” Bennett wrote on Twitter. “This is a despicable murder by terrorists who have stopped fearing us. We must bring back the lost deterrence by actions, not by slogans, or else we can expect another wave of murders.”
He then addressed Netanyahu directly, urging him as Defense Minister to “demolish all the terrorists’ houses.” He then slammed the government for not doing more to stop the Palestinian Authority’s so-called “pay-for-slay” scheme in which terrorists and their families receive financial rewards.