March 9, 2023 | Flash Brief

Terrorist Wounds Three in Tel Aviv Shooting

March 9, 2023 | Flash Brief

Terrorist Wounds Three in Tel Aviv Shooting

Latest Developments

A gunman wounded three people, one critically, in central Tel Aviv on Thursday before police shot him dead. The assailant was reportedly 23-year-old Mutaz Al Khuwaja, the son of a Hamas leader. Celebrations erupted on the streets of Jenin when news broke of the evening attack. The attack near Dizengoff Boulevard followed the killing by Israeli special forces of three Palestinian Islamic Jihad terrorists in the West Bank village of Jaba. The three, wanted for recent gun attacks in the area, opened fire on troops who tried to arrest them. No Israeli casualties resulted.

Today’s violence coincided with a visit by U.S. Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin during which, the Pentagon said, he called for “immediate steps to de-escalate violence and work towards a just and lasting peace.” Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who flew to Rome after meeting Austin, was being briefed on the Tel Aviv terrorist attack, aides said.

Expert Analysis

“Austin’s Israel visit was prefaced by a U.S. defense official telling reporters that the West Bank situation risked distracting from efforts to counter Iran. Washington does itself no favors with such reverse logic. Palestinian terrorism is part of Iran’s malign outreach, and an ally like Israel should be lauded for tackling it.” Mark Dubowitz, FDD CEO

“The threat of terrorism persists in Israel. Rising tensions in the West Bank may portend more of these violent events spilling over the green line into the heart of Israel. With Ramadan coming, Jerusalem is expected to be a particular area of concern. Amidst all of this, one significant question remains unanswered: is this organic, driven by outside patrons, or a combination of both? The Israelis are working hard to find an answer.”Jonathan Schanzer, FDD Senior Vice President for Research

Related Analysis

Secretary of Defense Austin Visits Jordan, Iraq, Egypt, and Israel,” FDD Flash Brief

Why the West Bank is in chaos,” by Jonathan Schanzer and Joe Truzman

Mapping Terrorism in the West Bank,” by Joe Truzman


Israel Palestinian Politics