Assailant in Kafr Qasim attack buried, with dozens on hand, including mayor

A man who attacked police officers early Friday, wounding three in an alleged act of terror before being shot dead was buried Saturday night in his hometown of Kafr Qasim, with dozens of locals calling out chants during the funeral.

Naim Badir’s body was handed over to his family by Israel following a promise to hold a small, quiet funeral with no more than 50 people. Kafr Qasim Mayor Adel Badir attended the burial ceremony, during which participants chanted “Allahu Akbar” (God is greatest), according to videos posted on social media.

Police said the incident was a terror attack, releasing extensive video footage and audio from the scene in the Arab city east of Tel Aviv. Badir’s family has nevertheless strongly denied the incident was an attack, accusing the police of “murdering our son in cold blood.”

The mayor has previously said: “We need to wait for the motive [to become clear]” before it was ruled as terrorism.

The police footage starts with CCTV footage of the entrance to Badir’s home, with audio of the phone call between the assailant and the approaching officer.

After calling the police to report an apparently nonexistent domestic violence incident, Badir can be heard directing the police officer to a certain spot just outside the building’s door. The call’s audio then cuts off and Badir is seen charging out of the building, pointing a makeshift submachine gun at the officer and attempting to open fire at close range.

With the firearm apparently jammed, Badir is then seen retreating back into the building.

The video then cuts to the cop’s helmet-mounted camera, while he takes cover, updates a police control center about the incident and calls for backup.

During this time, according to police, the assailant hurled Molotov cocktails at a police car. Police said they later found several more firebombs on the roof of the building where Badir had called the cops over to.

In the footage, a car’s engine can then be heard as Badir speeds in a car towards the officers, in reverse, and slams into another vehicle next to the police, injuring three officers, before being shot dead.

A knife was later found in the car.

The Ynet news site reported that even after viewing the footage, Badir’s family denied the incident had been a premeditated attack, and said the cops should have shot towards his legs instead of killing him.

A makeshift ‘Carlo’ submachine gun used by Naim Badir during an attack against police officers in Kafr Qasim, early December 23, 2022. (Israel Police)

Police Commissioner Kobi Shabtai said Friday morning that “the officers reacted fast and prevented a larger attack planned against police forces.”

Central District Commander Avi Bitton said after an assessment with various security officials including the Shin Bet security service, “it appears to have been a terror attack planned days earlier.”

Naim Badir (Courtesy)

A statement from the family insisted that “our son did not plan any attack. It’s a fallacious claim by police to hide its failures in facing crime in Arab society.”

The incident came amid high tensions and regular clashes between Israeli security forces and Palestinians, with most of the violence taking place within the West Bank. It also comes amid a wave of violent crime in Israel’s Arab community.

Molotov cocktails found on the roof of a building where an attack against police officers occurred in Kafr Qasim, early December 23, 2022. (Israel Police)

Earlier this month, a Palestinian rammed a vehicle into a motorist in Tel Aviv. Police prosecutors said Monday they plan to file terror charges against the suspect after an investigation found the motive for the incident was nationalistic.

Emanuel Fabian contributed to this report.

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