Photo Credit: Abu Ali Express / Twitter
So-called "first martyr of Ramadan" 2023, Amir Abu Khadija, commander and founder of the Rapid Reaction Brigades in Tulkarem, killed March 23, 2023 by Israeli troops in return fire.

A wanted Palestinian Authority terrorist suspected of involvement in several shooting attacks was shot and killed on Thursday when he opened fire at Israeli soldiers during an attempted arrest operation in the village of Izbat Shufa, east of Tulkarem.


The terrorist, 25-year-old Amir Abu Khadija, was wanted for recent shooting attacks on Israeli communities and security forces.

He refused to surrender when Israeli forces surrounded the house where he was holed up, and instead opened fire. Israeli forces confiscated an M-16 assault rifle and the car Abu Khadija allegedly used to carry out drive-by shooting attacks.

The Tulkarem branch of Fatah’s Al Aqsa Martyrs’ Brigades terrorist organization, with an emerging terror group known as the “Rapid Reaction Brigade” claimed Abu Khadija as its leader, according to Associated Press.

IDF soldiers returned fire, killing the terrorist, who intelligence reports said was planning to carry out an “imminent” attack in Jerusalem. Two other wanted terrorists who were with Abu Khadija reportedly surrendered to arrest by Israeli troops.

Abu Khadija is now being called the “first martyr of Ramadan” – the holy Islamic month that began Thursday and which typically is a trigger for escalation in Arab terrorist attacks on Israelis.

According to the Abu Ali Express website, Abu Khadija was the founder and commander of the so-called “Rapid Reaction Brigades” (Ra’ad Al-Sari Battalion) in Tulkarem.


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Hana Levi Julian is a Middle East news analyst with a degree in Mass Communication and Journalism from Southern Connecticut State University. A past columnist with The Jewish Press and senior editor at Arutz 7, Ms. Julian has written for, and other media outlets, in addition to her years working in broadcast journalism.