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Palestinian terrorist killed by police was 23-year-old son of senior Hamas operative

Hamas terrorist group claims shooter was a member of its military wing

Mutaz Salah al-Khawaja (Photo: Newpress/Twitter)

The Palestinian terrorist responsible for the shooting attack near a restaurant in Tel Aviv was shot dead on Thursday night by an off-duty officer as he charged at Israeli police. 

The terrorist, responsible for shooting at least three Israelis in their 20s, has been identified as Mutaz al-Khuwaja, the 23-year-old son of a senior operative in the Hamas terror organization.

Al-Khuwaja was a resident of Ni’lin, located in the West Bank. His father Sheikh Salah al-Khawaja claims he "was not informed of the plan by any official authority" but learned about it on the news when he saw photos of his son.

The shooter reportedly hid inside a building after his killing spree and exchanged fire with police before being shot

The Palestinian terrorist’s family members have been identified, with the father and another son arrested and taken into custody by Israeli security forces. The family home has been mapped and slated for demolition, following Israel’s decision last month to advance measures to combat terrorism.

Mutaz al-Khuwaja had been in Israeli prison twice before on offenses related to terrorism and allegedly was able to enter Israel illegally from the West Bank on Thursday, the night of the shooting attack.

One of the men shot in the terrorist attack suffered critical injuries, while the other two were moderately or lightly injured. 

The Gaza-based Hamas terrorist group claimed al-Khawaja was a member of its military wing.

"We mourn the martyr Mutaz al-Khuwaja, and we extol his heroic operation, and we threaten the criminal occupation with more attacks," the statement read. 

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

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