Remand of Akko Terror Car-Ram Driver Extended

YERUSHALAYIM -
Acco, Akko, Israel
An aerial view of Akko, situated on the northern end of Haifa Bay. (Itamar Grinberg)

The remand of an Arab driver who hit a Border Guard and two IDF soldiers in a car-ramming attack a week and a half ago was extended Wednesday. Police are charging the driver of the vehicle who carried out the attack in Akko with attempted murder, belonging to a terror group, and associating with terrorists.

The driver was shot and injured after he rammed into the two soldiers in the Akko shuk area. The suspect is still in the hospital, under police guard. Police plan on keeping him under lock and key until proceedings against him are completed.

Police said that the driver, a 26-year-old resident of Shfaram, began the attack after he received a ticket for driving violations. He first ran down a uniformed Border Guard and then continued on to the shuk area, where he ran down two soldiers, also in uniform. Police originally chalked up the attacks to “road rage,” after the driver received a ticket for NIS 1,000, but later said that they had determined that the attack was motivated by nationalistic terror feelings on the part of the terrorist.

Speaking to Hadashot News, the suspect’s attorney denied that terror was a factor. “I stress that this was not a terror attack. That Hamas took responsibility for this attack does not mean that my client is a member of Hamas. Neither he nor his family have any connection to Hamas, Islamic State, or any other terror group. We hope and believe that the truth will come out in court, and we will prove that this was an accident, not a terror attack,” the attorney said.