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IDF kills terrorists responsible for Dee family murders

Raid ends month-long search for killers

Palestinians clash with Palestinian security forces in Nablus, in the West Bank on Sept. 20, 2022, following the arrest of Hamas members by Palestinian security forces. Photo by Nasser Ishtayeh/Flash90

The Israel Defense Forces announced on Thursday morning that the two terrorists behind the murders of Lucy, Maia and Rina Dee, a British-Israeli mother and two daughters in early April. 

The IDF said the operation was a collaborative effort between the military, Israel’s Border Police and Shin Bet security officers, who had conducted an extensive search for the terrorist suspects following the shooting attack earlier this month. 

The two terrorists, reportedly members of Hamas terror group, were hiding out in the city of Nablus, or biblical Shechem. 

On Thursday morning, IDF and security forces raided the apartment where the two were suspects were staying. During the operation, there was an exchange of fire, and the two terrorists were killed. A senior Hamas operative, Ibrahim Hura, was reportedly also killed in the firefight. 

The IDF raid in Nablus was unusual as it was conducted during daylight hours. Such arrest operations are typically conducted at night, when security forces are likely to encounter less resistance, leading to fewer casualties. 

Some 200 Israeli troops participated in the raid, surrounding the building and preventing the terrorists from fleeing, while facing some resistance from local Palestinians in the vicinity. Despite stones being thrown at the military troops, the IDF did not report any injuries to forces during the operation. 

There have been some conflicting reports regarding the details of the raid.

Some Israeli media reported that the IDF troops first fired a shoulder-launched missile into the Nablus apartment to flush out the terrorists. However, according to The Jerusalem Post, an explosive drone was deployed into a window of the building where the terrorists were hiding and exploded. 

The use of explosive drones in the West Bank may mark a new tactical shift in Israel’s military strategy, possibly to avoid friction between troops and the surrounding Palestinian public while precisely targeting the terrorists with a pinpoint attack. 

A senior IDF official said the operation was carried out more rapidly than usual due to accurate intelligence and training. 

“With less talent and exactness [in intelligence and operational performance], more IDF personnel or Palestinian civilians could have been hurt,” he said. 

Shin Bet security forces reported finding 3 assault rifles – two M-16 rifles and one AK-47 – in the apartment where the suspects were killed.

Israeli Defense Minister Yoav Gallant praised the IDF and security forces for their efforts in bringing down the terrorist responsible for the April 7 shooting attack near the Hamra settlement in the West Bank.

"As I promised Leo, the father of the family, the long hand of the security establishment will reach every terrorist," Gallant said.

Leo Dee is the husband of Lucy Dee, 48, and father of Maia and Rina, ages 15 and 20, who were all killed as the result of the deadly attack. The sisters were both killed on site, while Dee’s wife succumbed to her wounds a few days later on April 10. 

While Palestinian media reported the deaths of the terrorists by Israeli forces, it did not acknowledge their connection to the murder of the Dee family members. 

Later in the morning, Nablus Governor Ibrahim Ramadan issued an unusual attack on the terrorists, saying, "the killing of the youths in Nablus this morning is a natural result of their non-compliance with the Palestinian security services and their refusal to surrender their weapons to the PA."

He said PA officials tried to get them to surrender.

"Preventive Security tried to persuade them a few weeks ago to turn themselves in and surrender their weapons, and they refused," he said.

The All Israel News Staff is a team of journalists in Israel.

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