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Nine Months Later, Fourth Victim of Independence Day Massacre Succumbs to Wounds

February 3, 2023

by: Raanan Ben Tzur ~ Ynet

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A yahrzeit candle, which Jewish people light on the anniversary of a loved one who passed away

Friday, 3 February 2023 | Nine months after two Palestinians carried out an axe-stabbing spree in the predominantly ultra-Orthodox city of Elad on Israel’s Independence Day, killing three Israelis, a fourth victim succumbed to his wounds on Thursday.

Shimon Ma’atuf, 75, from the small community of Bareket east of Ben Gurion Airport, was critically wounded after he had been struck on the head with an axe by one of the assailants. He was hospitalized in a coma until his passing.

Ma’atuf was working as an armed security guard at an Independence Day event held in a park adjacent to the scene of the attack.

A father of six and grandfather of 13, Ma’atuf managed to fire one round at one of the assailants before being struck with the axe, sustaining critical wounds to his skull and jaw, according to eyewitnesses.

According to his daughter, Aviva Hillel, Ma’atuf was “moved from one hospital to another. He had an infection and went through months of torment and anguish. The terrorists struck him in the head and jaw and he never recovered.”

The assailants, As’ad Alrafa’ani and Sabhi Abu Shakir, 20 and 19 at the time of the attack respectively, both from the West Bank [Judea and Samaria] Palestinian village of Rummanah near Jenin, were caught hiding behind a bush in a quarry near Elad at the tail end of a massive manhunt.

Alrafa’ani and Abu Shakir managed to enter Elad after acquiring knives and axes, breaching the city’s security fence and catching a ride to the scene of the attack from one of the victims.

Posted on February 3, 2023

Source: (This article was originally published by Ynetnews on February 2, 2023. Time-related language has been modified to reflect our republication today. See original article at this link.)

Photo Credit: Christoph Michels/

Photo License: wikimedia

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