07/23/2008, 00.00
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Fears and questions in Jerusalem following second bulldozer attack

Although police are ruling out an organized plan, it is worrying that both attackers were from Jerusalem, and possessed Israeli documents.

Jerusalem (AsiaNews) -  Israeli security forces must carry out more operations in East Jerusalem, and arrest more terrorists. Despite the conviction that yesterday's attack in Jerusalem was "an individual action" and not part of an organized plan, an anonymous source from Shin Bet, the secret service, quoted today by Yedoith Ahronoth, denounces the ineffectiveness of security measures and asks for more room to maneuver in an area of the city in which, since 2001, 270 residents have been accused of involvement in terrorist activities.

The statements attributed to the man from Shin Bet are a demonstration of the concerns raised in Israel by the second attack in three weeks carried out by a Palestinian driving a bulldozer into a bus on the streets of the holy city. The fears are aggravated by the fact that both attackers were citizens of East Jerusalem, with identification documents and permission for freedom of movement released by Israeli authorities. Yesterday's attack, carried out on King David Street in the city center, wounded 24 people, and in fact seems to have been a copy of the more bloody attack on July 2, also in the city center, on Jaffa Street, which killed three. The fact that in both cases the attackers were killed by Israeli security agents does not diminish the sense of alarm.

This alarm had already been raised, if it is true that the head of Shin Bet, Yuval Diskin,  just a few hours before, had spoken with the foreign affairs and defense committees of the Knesset (parliament) about the possibility of actions like the attack with a bulldozer on July 2. A commentary in Haaretz also emphasizes the fact that yesterday's attack took place "less than a minute" away from the hotel that would soon host Barack Obama, which guaranteed worldwide media coverage for the action, in second place only to the news of the arrest of Karadzic, the nationalist Serbian leader sought for massacres and crimes against humanity. Although the human consequences were less serious than the attack three weeks ago, the newspaper notes, the timing was "amazing".

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