A 22-year-old Egyptian policeman named Mohamed Salah Ibrahim has been identified as the perpetrator accused of killing three Israeli soldiers in a border attack on Saturday morning. The victims, Staff Sgt. Ori Yitzhak Iluz (20), Staff Sgt. Ohad Dahan (20), and Sgt. Lia Ben Nun (19), were laid to rest on Sunday. They served as combat soldiers in the Bardelas and Caracal battalions, and at the time of the terror attack the three soldiers were guarding the border with Egypt.
Initial investigations conducted by the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) reveal that Ibrahim managed to enter Israel through an improvised gate along the border.
Local media reports indicate that Ibrahim was conscripted into the Egyptian army in 2022 and stationed as a policeman near the Israel border. Sources from Egypt, as reported by Israel’s Kan public broadcaster, suggest that Ibrahim had expressed dissatisfaction with his military duty, and had even gone absent without leave for 18 days. The report from Kan also stated that the terrorist may have been disgruntled about what he saw as a lack of seriousness taken by Egyptian authorities after the death of a colleague.
According to the same reports cited by Kan, a friend of Ibrahim’s claimed that he had been attempting to secure a medical exemption to his military obligations.
Israeli defense officials consider Ibrahim to have acted alone in the attack. Egyptian officials have distanced themselves from the policeman, asserting their lack of awareness regarding his intentions, as stated by Kan.
Egyptian defense officials visited the scene of the incident on Saturday and held discussions with IDF representatives. IDF Chief of Staff Lt. Gen. Herzi Halevi appointed Maj. Gen. Nimrod Aloni to head an inquiry into the attack.
Media reports in Israel indicate that the IDF has handed over Ibrahim’s body to Egypt for burial on Monday.