US ambassador makes rare visit to settlement, after terror attack


David Friedman pays condolence call at home of Yotam Ovadia in community of Adam, near Jerusalem

US Ambassador to Israel David Friedman made a condolence visit Monday to the West Bank home of an Israeli man who was stabbed to death in a terror attack last week.

Friedman traveled to the Adam settlement north of Jerusalem where he met with the family of 31-year-old Yotam Ovadia, who was killed in the Thursday attack by a Palestinian who had sneaked into the settlement.

Friedman met with Ovadia’s wife while she observed the traditional Jewish week of mourning for close relatives, known as shiva.

“I was heartbroken to see the tragic impact of the murder of Yotam Ovadia — a young mother left alone to care for two small children, parents grieving for their only son. Words are insufficient to describe the evil and barbarity of the terrorist act,” he said after leaving the home.

Ovadia was a father to a 2-year-old and a 7-month-old.

While US officials rarely visit settlements, Friedman has done so in the past and is not the first American ambassador to do so.

A spokesperson for the US embassy said her office would not comment on the ambassador’s schedule.

In January, Friedman paid a condolence visit at the home of Likud MK Yehudah Glick in the settlement of Otniel as the lawmaker mourned the passing of his wife, Yafi.

Yafi Glick was considered a terror victim after she passed away due to complications she suffered following an assassination attempt on her husband in 2014.

Unlike previous US envoys, Friedman had been known as a strong supporter of Israeli settlements before he took office, serving as president of American Friends of Bet El Institutions, an organization that supports the large West Bank settlement near Ramallah.