Yaakov Katz , THE JERUSALEM POST
Security forces discovered the remains of an improvised explosive device (IED) on the side of Route 443 last week after it failed to fully explode, the IDF announced Thursday.
Firecrackers attached to the bomb went off but the rest of the device did not. The minor explosion of the firecrackers caused major traffic disruptions on the highway which connects Jerusalem and Modi'in.
The bomb was found by IDF and Border Police forces near Dir Naballah, south of Ramallah last Thursday night and later destroyed by the IDF in a controlled explosion.
Road 443 is one of Israel's main arteries, and the attack was intended to target passing motorists.
The IED was created from a gas balloon and firecrackers. Attached to the explosive was a sketch of how and where the Palestinians planned to plant the bomb on the side of the road, causing the most amount of damage as possible.
The sketch also included the wording: "Al Aksa Martyrs Brigades, the Alla Abu Sharifa Unit", in an apparent reference to the terror group behind the attack.
Road 443 connects Jerusalem with Modi'in and Tel Aviv, and is under heavy IDF and Border Police security. There are occasional stoning and Molotov cocktail attacks on the road from surrounding Palestinian villages.
IDF sources said that they would continue operating against Palestinian terrorists that are targeting Israeli civilians and security forces.
In recent months, the IDF has noted a slight increase in attempts by Palestinians to carry out terror attacks in the West Bank. This is attributed to frustration among Palestinian youth with the current deadlock in the peace process with Israel.