The slain victim was identified as 20-year-old Cpl. Avraham Fetena from Haifa.
Hamas terrorists shot and killed an IDF soldier and wounded five other members of the security forces near the “tunnel road” checkpoint between Gush Etzion and Jerusalem on Thursday morning.
Three Palestinian gunmen arrived at the crossing by car and opened fire on Israeli forces, who responded by shooting and killing the terrorists, authorities said.
The terrorists were reportedly part of a Hamas cell and planned to perpetrate a much larger attack in Jerusalem.
The fatal victim, identified as 20-year-old Cpl. Avraham Fetena from Haifa, was evacuated to a hospital by Magen David Adom emergency medical personnel in critical condition, where he later died of his wounds.
Paramedics treated three more victims at the scene before evacuating them to the hospital. A woman in her early 20s and a man in his 30s were in moderate condition and another young man was lightly wounded.
The other two victims were in light-to-moderate condition.
Shaare Zedek and Hadassah Ein Kerem hospitals each said they treated three victims for gunshot wounds.
Three additional people were treated for severe anxiety and stress, according to MDA.
The Israel Security Agency (Shin Bet) said it identified two Hamas operatives responsible for the attack, naming them as Abed el-Khader Kawasme and Hassan Mamoun Qafisha, both from Hebron.
Kawasme is the son of Abdallah Kawasme, the head of Hamas in Hebron who was killed in 2003. Qafisha is reportedly also related to senior Hamas operatives in Judea and Samaria.
The Shin Bet has yet to confirm the identification of the third suspect, who was named as Nasser Kawasme in Palestinian reports.
Security personnel were sweeping the area for any additional suspects.
Police sappers and sniffing dogs ruled out the possibility that an explosive device was left at the scene.
The car used by the terrorists had false license plates, police said.
Israel Police Commissioner Kobi Shabtai said that weapons seized from the vehicle indicated that the terrorists “planned to carry out a massacre."
Police found two M-16 rifles, two handguns, hundreds of bullets in bulk along with 10 cartridges, as well as two axes and clothing resembling an Israeli army uniform.
“The terrorists who were killed were caught with weapons, axes, a large amount of ammunition and dates [food] for a long stay. They planned to carry out a massacre. All forces acted resolutely and prevented a much larger attack,” Shabtai said.
Israeli National Security Minister Itamar Ben-Gvir said on Thursday that the attack proves the failure of Jerusalem's defense strategy in Judea and Samaria.
"We have to deal with Hamas in Judea and Samaria as well as the Palestinian Authority, which has similar views as Hamas and whose leaders identified with the [Oct. 7] massacre, exactly how we are addressing Gaza," he added.
"Trusting Holocaust denier [and P.A. chief] Mahmoud Abbas is anarchy. Containment will explode in our faces like in Gaza. Now is the time to act," said Ben-Gvir.
Last week, an Israeli-American Border Police officer was killed in a terror attack near the Herod’s Gate entrance to Jerusalem’s Old City. Another officer was moderately wounded.
The slain officer was named as Sgt. Elisheva Rose Ida Lubin, 20, from Kibbutz Sa’ad near the Gaza Strip. She immigrated from Atlanta in the United States in August 2021 and was drafted into the police in March of the following year.
The terrorist was killed. He was identified as a 16-year-old resident of the eastern Jerusalem neighborhood of Issawiya.
Late last month, an Israeli policeman was seriously wounded in a stabbing attack near the Shivtei Yisrael light rail stop in Jerusalem.
On Oct. 12, two police officers were injured in a terrorist shooting just outside Jerusalem’s Old City.
The attacks come amid ongoing fighting sparked by Hamas’s Oct. 7 invasion of the Jewish state in which terrorists killed 1,200 people, wounded thousands more and took some 240 captives to the Gaza Strip.