The Shin Bet security service told the Israeli Cabinet that there has been a “considerable decline” in the number of terror attacks committed by Palestinians in recent weeks.
According to the Shin Bet, the number of attacks described as “significant” also has declined significantly. The Shin Bet reported 20 significant attacks in March, compared to 78 in October 2015, and 3 in April.
According to the Shin Bet, the main reason for this decline is Israel’s counterterrorist operation. In a statement about the Shin Bet presentation released by the Prime Minister’s Office following the Cabinet meeting on April 10, the Shin Bet cited the operation against Hamas, “which significantly increased its efforts to carry out attacks during this period (including abductions and suicide attacks), effective deterrent measures to prevent additional attacks and determined action against Palestinian incitement.”
“All of these were in the context of an effort not to disrupt the fabric of life of a majority of the Palestinian population, which is not involved in terrorism, and to continue cooperation with the Palestinian security services,” the statement said.
According to the Shin Bet, the effective preventative measures have “left a sense among the Palestinian public (especially lone terrorists) that escalation is useless.”
The Shin Bet said that since the beginning of the increase in Palestinian terror attacks beginning on October 1, Palestinian terrorists have committed approximately 270 significant terror attacks and attempted attacks including shootings, stabbings, and vehicular attacks, resulting in the deaths of 29 Israelis and four foreign nationals, including two Americans. Approximately 250 civilians have been injured.
Most of the attacks have been isolated and done by youths. The Shin Bet said that while some of the attacks had nationalistic motives, most were due to economic or personal hardship. In addition, according to the Shin Bet, “terrorist organizations, especially Hamas, have been trying in recent months to carry out major attacks” in the West Bank and in Israel proper “in order to accelerate the escalation.”
The Shin Bet said that it and other security services have stopped over 290 significant attacks since the beginning of 2015, most of which were in the last six months, including 25 abductions and 15 suicide attacks. The last fatal attack was a month ago.