Israel returns bodies of Har Nof terrorists

Marcy Oster

JERUSALEM (JTA) — Israel returned to their families the bodies of the two terrorists who killed five in an attack on a synagogue in the Har Nof neighborhood of Jerusalem.

The bodies were transferred on Thursday, more than a month after the axe and knife attack during morning worship services at Bnei Torah Kehillat Yaakov, which left four rabbis and a police officer dead.

The two terrorists, Palestinian cousins Uday and Ghassan Abu Jamal, were buried shortly after the transfer in a West Bank cemetery and not in the eastern Jerusalem neighborhood of Jabel Mukaber where they had lived, as required by Israel, the Palestinian Maan news agency reported. Only 40 relatives were allowed to attend the funeral and the families paid a $5,000 deposit to insure that they adhered to the stipulations.

Following the attack, Israel’s Interior Ministry revoked the residency permit of the widow of Ghassan Abu Jamal, requiring her to leave Israeli territory and stripping her of any financial benefits she receives from the state. Demolition orders also have been issued for the homes of both terrorists.

Until the return on Thursday, it was the first time that Israel had withheld the bodies of terrorists as a deterrence measure.