Gili Cohen
December 21, 2012 - 1:00am


Two Palestinians broke into an IDF base, attacked a soldier and stole his weapon before fleeing the scene early Friday morning.

The soldier was on guard duty in an army base adjacent to the Palestinian neighborhood of A-Ram, in north-east Jerusalem. There has been an escalation of violence in the West Bank in recent weeks, although tensions calmed in recent days.

Initial investigations into the incident by Central Command indicate that the two Palestinians were able to reach the IDF's Rama base undetected due to the stormy weather. Additional forces were called to the scene and began scanning the area to try and apprehend the two Palestinians.

The combat soldier, serving in the 402 battalion of the army's artillery corps, said that he opened the door to his guard post after sensing something was wrong, and was then hit with a fire extinguisher and the tear gassed. The IDF reported that the Palestinians were also holding a toy gun they used to threaten the soldier. The soldier was treated at the scene by medics who were on hand, but was not transferred for advanced medical treatment. The IDF is defining it a severe incident and has ruled it out as criminal

According to a statement issued by the IDF, "a soldier was assaulted overnight by two Palestinians adjacent to A-Ram and then fled the scene with his weapon. They threatened him with a fake gun and used tear gas against him. The circumstances of the incident are being investigated."

Two months ago, masked men broke into an IDF base in northern Israel, tied up a soldier and stole weapons. The IDF has seen several robberies of weapons from army bases in the past. In order to tackle this problem, the IDF decided to lower the number of soldiers who take their weapons home. In 2011, 80 IDF weapons were stolen, in 2010, 137 weapons were stolen and in 2009, 145 were stolen.


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