In the most recent example of a new global trend where Muslim radicals drive their vehicles into unsuspecting civilians, seeking to murder innocents with their automobiles (a practice that has been coined “vehicular jihad”), a Palestinian man who drove his car into civilians waiting at a Jerusalem bus stop told police that he was “seeking out Jews to murder.”
37-year-old Khaled Koutineh, who lives in a Palestinian town near Jerusalem, was arrested last week for ramming his vehicle into a group of Israelis, which resulted in the death of a 25-year-old man and critically wounded a young woman.
At the time, police said they would not jump to conclusions as to the motivations of the individual behind the incident. But after hearing the Palestinian man’s remarks, “It is possible and there is a very strong basis to now say that this was a terror attack,” officials stated.
“As part of a joint investigation handled by the Jerusalem police and the Israel Security Agency (Shin Bet), Khaled Koutineh confessed to carrying out the vehicular terror attack last Wednesday, the eve of Holocaust Remembrance Day,” said the Israeli authorities’ statement. “Koutineh confessed to carrying out the attack with the intention of harming Jews, a decision he made just moments before the actual deed,” the official statement added.
Police said that Koutineh was driving along a highway looking out for a group of Jews to run over, and found his target at the Jerusalem-area bus stop.
Koutineh’s attack follows multiple previous incidents where Palestinian drivers conducted deadly attacks using their automobile as a weapon. In a recent incident in March, a Palestinian terrorist rammed his car into a cyclist and six Israeli Border Patrol officers, injuring several individuals.
Vehicular jihad incidents have occurred not only in Israel but throughout the world over the past year.
In December, France witnessed a deadly vehicular jihadist attacks when a French Muslim ran over pedestrians while yelling, “Allahu Akbar,” and stating, “this is in the name of the children of Palestine.”
In October, a Canadian man carried out a vehicular jihad attack that killed a Canadian soldier after he used his vehicle to run over multiple individuals in a mall parking lot.