Israeli forces on Tuesday morning exchanged fire with and killed the two chief suspects in the June 12th abduction and murder of Jewish teenagers Eyal Yifrach, Gilad Shaar, and Naftali Frenkel (pictured).
Israel Today The brief gun battle took place in the Judean town of Hebron, where Marwan Kawasme and Amer Abu Aysha had holed up in a carpentry shop near a complex owned by the Kawasme family. Israeli soldiers surrounded the building during the predawn hours and demanded the two wanted Hamas members surrender. They were instead met by machine gun fire.
Following the disappearance of Yifrach, Shaar and Frenkel as they attempted to hitchhike home from their yeshiva near Hebron, Israel launched “Operation Brother’s Keeper” in a frantic effort to find the youths. When the boys’ bodies were found a week later, the operation shifted to one of retribution and deterrence. In the wake of Tuesday’s successful operation, IDF Chief of Staff Gen. Benny Gantz had this to say:
“On the eve of the Jewish New Year, Operation Brothers’ Keeper – which began Friday, June 13, 2014 and continued with determination since then – came to an end. We promised the Shaar, Yifrach, and Frenkel families that we would get to their children’s murderers, and we did that this morning.”
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu added the following:
“When we found the bodies of Naftali, Gilad and Eyal I said that whoever carried out the kidnapping and murder of our teens — his blood will be on his head. This morning it was accomplished. We will continue to hit terror everywhere.”
Hamas, too, confirmed the deaths of its operatives.