Yesterday a 3-year old girl was critically injured in a rock-throwing incident on route 5 from Ariel to Tel Aviv, which caused her family car to crash into a truck which was also struck by rocks.
A woman and her three daughters were injured on Thursday in a car accident caused by stones hurled by Palestinians on Route 5 connecting Tel Aviv and Ariel.
One of the girls, three-year-old Adele, was critically wounded, while the mother, Adva Biton, 40, and her two other daughters, Avigail and Naama – ages four and five – sustained moderate injuries.
A truck that veered off course crashed into the woman’s car which also swerved as a result of stone throwing. The truck driver was lightly injured. A bus was also hit by stones with its driver sustaining light injuries.
The Shai District Police confirmed that stones had been hurled at vehicles traveling on Route 5.
Doctors at the Rabin Medical Center said that Adele suffered a serious head injury and was taken straight into surgery upon her arrival. “We are doing everything to save her,” said Dr. Oleg Kaminsky.
In the meanwhile, the IDF and Shin Ben are still searching for the Palestinians that hurled the stones. It is believed they used a point overlooking Route 5, near Ariel, to hurl the stones and then fled to one of the nearby villages.
Several hours later it was reported that a man and a 10-year-old boy were lightly injured by stones hurled at them on the same road. They were taken to the Hasharon Medical Center in Petah Tikva.
Gershon Mesika, head of the Shomron Regional Council, visited the Biton family at the Rabin Medical Center in Petah Tikva. “The entire Israeli people is with you, praying for the recovery of the injured,” Mesika said. “The unjust policy that insists on categorizing stone hurling as disorderly conduct rather than as terror is completely irresponsible.”
According to Mesika, “In the past couple of months, incidents of stone hurling have become more prevalent, but with no response – due to restrictions that politicians have imposed on the IDF. It’s about time we come to terms with the fact that a stone can kill. We must view stone hurling as terror.”
Rabbi Aharon Cohen of the Yakir settlement, in which the family resides, said that the family was inflicted by “terror that has been growing more frequent over the last few weeks – terror that some have been taking lightly.”
In November, Ziona Kalla, wife of singer Itzik Kalla, sustained serious injuries as a result of stones hurled at her car near Beitar Illit in the West Bank.
And let us not forget Asher Palmer and his baby son Yonatan Hy’d who were killed in a rock attack near Kiryat Arba just over a year ago.
Residents of the area from Yakir and Revava gathered at the site of the attack to pray for the injured victims of the attack, particularly for little Adelle who is in such a critical state.
Several dozen Israelis living in Samaria (Shomron) found themselves drawn Thursday night to the place where a mother and three of her young daughters were seriously injured in a rock attack. The scene of the attack ended up being the site of an unplanned protest and prayer rally.
The protesters, most residents of the nearby towns of Yakir and Revava, called on the army and security services to crack down on rock attacks.
They also held an impromptu prayer rally for two-year-old Adelle Biton, who was critically wounded in the attack. “Let this be an hour of mercy,” they pleaded.
Attacks on Israeli drivers in Judea and Samaria have been on the rise in 2013. Attacks in which groups of Palestinian Authority resident men hurl large stones and concrete blocks at passing vehicles are reported dozens of times per month.
PA gangs often throw firebombs as well. Most reported firebomb attacks target drivers in Judea and Samaria, although at least one such attack in recent months took place in a mixed Arab-Jewish city in Israel.
Following the attack the IDF arrested 10 Palestinians in the area for the attack:
Eights suspects were arrested in the village of Haras, and two in the village of Harath, southeast of Kalkiliya.
Spokesman Mickey Rosenfeld said police had received a number of calls about stone-throwing on the road at that time.
The Border Police said that as of 10 p.m. they, along with IDF soldiers, were still searching in the area, including inside Palestinian villages, but had arrested no suspects.
Also by 10 p.m., police had not determined for certain if rock-throwers had caused the wreck, but that this was likely, Rosenfeld said.
He added that police efforts were focused on two fronts – finding out who threw the rocks and arresting them, and determining beyond a shadow of a doubt whether the rocks caused the crash.
Hazon said he called on the government to eradicate the phenomenon of stone-throwing that had exacted a bloody price.
A resident of Ariel, Hazon said the city’s residents “won’t be cannon fodder for the quiet the prime minister wants in advance of [US President Barack] Obama’s visit,” Hazon said.
Avi Ro’eh, who heads the Council of Jewish Communities of Judea, Samaria and the Gaza Strip, said that the stonethrowing attacks on Route 5 were acts of terrorism.
He said he had turned to the IDF and asked that it take the issue of stonethrowing more seriously, because “stones can kill.”
MK Danny Danon (Likud) said that the incoming defense minister’s first challenge would be to restore security to the roads in Judea and Samaria.
A total of 139 attacks, including firebombings and the use of improvised explosives, took place in February, compared to 83 in January.
One hundred of February’s attacks took place in the West Bank – 84 of them firebombings – compared to 56 in the previous month.
In the capital, 38 attacks – 35 of them firebombings – were registered by the Shin Bet in February, compared to 27 in January.
Unfortunately, these arrests have not impressed the Palestinian terrorists or stopped the phenomenon, and the rock throwing on route 5 was renewed this morning, thankfully without damage or injuries.
These rock-throwing attacks will not stop until the IDF is instructed by the political echelon to treat them as terror attacks and act accordingly with the perpetrators.