Originally sourced from
Bomber Dropped `Martyr' Hints
August 10, 2001
West Bank (AP) - A 23-year-old Palestinian who killed himself and 14
others in a bomb blast in a Jerusalem pizzeria was a devout Muslim
who began hinting a few weeks ago that he would become a ``martyr,''
his family said Friday.
Thursday afternoon, Izzedine al-Masri wandered into the packed
Sbarro restaurant in downtown Jerusalem and detonated explosives
strapped to his body.
media reports said he had tied the detonator string to his elbow to
enable him to trigger the explosives even if apprehended. The
reports also said Israeli authorities had specific warnings about
the impending attack, and that it remained unclear why more was not
done to try to stop the assailant.
bomber's family said al-Masri, a member of the Islamic militant
group Hamas, wanted to avenge an Israeli rocket attack on Hamas
headquarters in the West Bank town of Nablus last week. Eight people
were killed at the time, including two Hamas leaders and two
Friday, al-Masri's family held a wake in the village of Aqaba on the
outskirts of the West Bank town of Jenin. Al-Masri's father, Shaheel,
50, flanked by his seven remaining sons, said he was proud of
said Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon ``is continuing the policy
of killing our people, and my son succeeded in carrying out a
Friends, relatives and neighbors congratulated the smiling elder al-Masri.
said his son was a devout Muslim who had participated in Hamas
rallies and funeral marches during the 10 months of
Israeli-Palestinian fighting. Al-Masri said his son had worked in
the family's fast food restaurant in Jenin.
month ago, Izzedine had begun dropping hints that he was about to
become a ``martyr,'' as Islamic militants refer to suicide bombers,
the elder al-Masri said.
Izzedine al-Masri left home on Wednesday, telling his family he was
going to stay with friends in another West Bank town for a while.
Before his death, al-Masri posed for a photo showing him wearing a
green Hamas headband and holding an assault rifle.
The al-Masri interview is also mentioned in
this contemporary Irish news article