Muataz Hijazi spent more than a decade in prison for terrorist arson attempts and for violent attacks while in prison against prison guards and against another inmate. He slashed two guards in their faces with a razor blade, hurt a third guard, and poured boiling water over the entire body of another prisoner, and was only released in 2012. Even so, he was employed at the right-wing Menachem Begin Heritage Center as a cook.
Above: Muataz Hijazi
Ynet has a report on the violence and arson attacks carried out by Muataz Hijazi, the Palestinian former security prisoner released from prison just two years ago, in the years before he allegedly shot and seriously wounded right-wing activist Rabbi Yehuda Glick Wednesday outside the Menachem Begin Heritage Center in Jerusalem.
Hijazi spent more than a decade in prison for terrorist arson attempts and for violent attacks while in prison against prison guards and against another inmate. He slashed two guards in their faces with a razor blade. In separate incident, he also wounded a guard in his face. In a third incident, he poured boiling water over the entire body of another prisoner. He was only released in 2012, more than a decade after being imprisoned.
But even with this very recent history of extrme violence and terrorist activity, Hijazi reportedly worked at the right-wing Menachem Begin Heritage Center as a chef in a restaurant:
…Hijazi had been employed at the Terasa restaurant in Jerusalem’s Begin Center, outside of which Glick was shot. A shift manager that spoke with Ynet said that he had let Hijazi go at 9:40 pm, half an hour before the shooting took place. According to Hijazi's mother, her son asked her to pray for him before he left for work, as he did every day. "What happened is a crime that an Israeli cell is responsible for," she said. "We've been suffocated, there are no prayers at al-Aqsa and we can't walk around freely. We feel like we're in jail. All of our roads are blocked and we also suffer from the high cost of living and suffer socially," she added. "I still don't believe my son shot a right-wing activist. All of the neighbors say he is a wonderful man and can't believe he did this." At 5:30am, the YAMAM arrived at the Hijazi home in Abu Tor and located the suspect. "I heard yelling and when I looked out the window I saw a lot of soldiers," Hijazi's sister said. "I was sleeping at my brother's house and I saw soldiers grab him. Within seconds I heard gunfire and I heard my brother yell 'Allahu Akbar.' The soldiers also prevented us from seeing what was going on. The soldiers wouldn't let anyone come close or open a window. They threw stun grenades and tear gas at us and wouldn't let the medical team treat my brother, who was bleeding while the soldiers were around him."
The sister went on to say that "the Jews are persecuting all of the residents of East Jerusalem. Perhaps whoever shot the right-wing activist is one of the Jews but they want to lay the blame on us. They should launch an investigation. My brother was killed only because he's a freed security prisoner."
How was a man like Hijazi employed by a public event space controlled and operated by Israel's Jewish hard right-wing?