Netanyahu: Israel will remain “forever” in Hebron’s Tomb of the Patriarchs

Marcy Oster

JERUSALEM (JTA) — Israel will remain “forever” in Hebron’s Tomb of the Patriarchs Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu hours after an Israeli man died of wounds sustained in an attack there.

“I say to all those who would uproot us from the Tomb of the Patriarchs – except for a few years in the previous century, we have been there for almost 4,000 years and we will stay there forever. You cannot defeat us,” Netanyahu told his Cabinet on Wednesday morning.

Genady Kofman, 41, a maintenance worker at the Tomb of the Patriarchs, died earlier on Wednesday at Shaare Zedek Medical Center in Jerusalem, succumbing to injuries sustained on Dec. 7, when he was stabbed several times in the chest by a Palestinian assailant while waiting for a ride home in front of the site.

Israel Border Police shot and killed the attacker at the scene.

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Kofman, a husband and father of two, was a resident of the nearby Kiryat Arba.

Hebron has been a hot spot of the recent violence in Israel and the West Bank. Jews and Muslims revere the city’s Tomb of the Patriarchs as the gravesite of their forefathers.

Kofman is the 25th Israeli to be killed in the current wave of Palestinian violence that began in October.

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