A 79-year-old woman has been identified as the victim murdered in a terror attack in Ra’anana on Monday.
The car-ramming and stabbing attack left 18 Israelis injured, with Edna Blustein discovered to be the only fatality after being taken to hospital with critical injuries and later being declared dead. The suspects allegedly switched between three vehicles, one belonging to Blustein, and ran over pedestrians in several locations around Ra’anana.
A member of Israeli police inspects a damaged car following a suspected ramming attack in the central town of Raanana, on January 15, 2024. (Photo by JACK GUEZ / AFP) (Photo by JACK GUEZ/AFP via Getty Images)
Two terrorists from the Hebron region were arrested and have since been identified as Mahmoud Zidaat, 44, and Ahmed Zidaat, 24, who police have said were related. The pair worked at a car wash in the city though neither possessed a permit to be in Israel, and a forged identity card was reportedly found on one of the attackers. Their employers have also been arrested, according to Israel National News.
The Israel Security Authorities reported that both attackers were barred from entering Israel after having been caught illegally entering the country several times.
Prior to his arrest, one of the terrorists wrote on Telegram: “I have taken revenge. Allahu Akbar.”
Blustein was allegedly dragged from her car and stabbed to death before the terrorists commandeered her vehicle. They then lost control of the car, going on to steal a second vehicle which they used to continue their rampage, striking other cars and running over pedestrians.
According to Dr. Ron Brunett, The Schneider Pediatric Center's emergency medicine department director, seven children were brought into the Tel Aviv hospital for treatment. Six of them, aged between 10 and 16, are in mild condition.
The French Foreign Ministry said two French citizens were among the injured in a statement released on Monday.
“France utterly condemns the terrorist attack in Ra’anana today, which killed at least one person and injured 17 others, including several children. Nothing justifies terrorism” the statement said.
“Two young compatriots are among those injured. The French Consulate General in Tel Aviv is working flat out to support our nationals in Ra’anana. France wishes the injured a speedy recovery. It assures Israel of its solidarity at this difficult time.”
The mayor of Ra’anana Chaim Broyde said on Monday: "We share in the family's sorrow over her murder and wish the injured a rapid recovery."
“We handled two separate scenes today. The rapid response by the city’s security services, the police, and the municipal emergency squad prevented an even greater attack, saved lives, and allowed the rapid capture of both terrorists. I demand that all employers examine any employee and the reliability of his identity card.”