IDF Arrests Terrorists Behind Ariel Shooting; Israeli Hero Killed While Shielding Fiancé

Israeli counterterrorism captures weapons used in latest terror attack. Illustrative image of M-16 used in prior attack. Photo courtesy of the ISA.

An Israeli hero paid the ultimate price while saving his fiancé from terrorists on Friday night, and one night later the killers were caught by the IDF in a counterterrorism operation. Vyacheslav Golev—a 23-year-old security guard at the security checkpoint at the entrance to the settlement of Ariel—was murdered on the Sabbath by gunmen as the ongoing Palestinian terror wave continued.

Golev died a hero by using his body to shield his fiancé—also a community guard—from the attack. Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett, who highlighted Golev’s bravery in comments published by his office on Sunday, said, “This wonderful couple was just beginning their life together; the heart breaks… We will remember Vyacheslav, together with all of our heroes.”

The IDF Twitter feed reported on Saturday that the IDF and other Israeli security forces arrested the two terrorists and confiscated the weapons used in the attack. The IDF Hebrew website, translated to English by Google, added that in addition to capturing Yahya Marai and Yusuf Assi, a third suspect was also arrested. There were no casualties to the Israeli security forces in the operation.

“There is no terrorist whom we will not reach and settle accounts with,” said Bennett in a statement from his office on Saturday evening after the terrorists were arrested. “Our war with terrorism is lengthy. Together we will win.”

According to The Times of Israel, the terrorists drove to the security checkpoint and the passenger opened fire. After both the driver and the passenger exited the vehicle to shoot at the guard post again, the gunmen made their escape in their car. The Times of Israel report, citing Channel 13, noted that the third suspect arrested is the father of one of the terrorists, who allegedly helped the terrorists escape after they set fire to the getaway car to apparently try and cover their tracks. The article noted the attack is believed to have been planned well in advance.

The Israeli Security Agency, in a press release covering the capturing of the terrorists, reported that the arrests came after an “expedited intelligence and operational activity” by the Israeli Security Agency (ISA), the IDF and the Israel National Counter-Terrorism Unit. Bennett, in his comments on Sunday, noted that Israel’s security forces “apprehend every terrorist.”

The timing of the attack not only comes amidst ongoing conflict with Palestinian terrorists and rioters, but also during the season in which Israel marks Holocaust Remembrance Day (April 28), Israel’s Memorial Day for soldiers and victims of terrorism (May 4), and Israeli Independence Day (May 5). Bennett didn’t miss the significance.

“We are at the start of the week of remembrance and independence, a week that is always tumultuous and difficult. Hardly a day goes by on which we are not reminded of our continuing fight to live in our land in security and tranquility,” said Bennett at Sunday’s cabinet meeting.

“…This wave of terrorism requires the entire security establishment to make the maximum effort.”

(By Joshua Spurlock,, May 1, 2022)

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