Police are still hunting an alleged bomb maker who fixed a sinister device to a car in Sydney and instructed the owner to take down a Palestine flag flying from their home.
On Friday police were called to a house in Botany, a suburb near the airport in Sydney’s south, following reports a suspicious object had been put on the bonnet of a car.
A note attached to the device, which appeared to be made from a jerry fuel can, duct tape, large bolts and a cigarette lighter, read: “Enough! Take down flag! One chance!!!!”
Specialists from the Rescue and Bomb Squad were dispatched with a bomb disposal robot at the home and later deemed the improvised device safe.
Theo, who lives at the address, told 9News the homemade bomb-like object gave him “a bit of a fright”.
“I didn’t know what it was, I also knew that even if it wasn’t dangerous that I wanted police to inspect it as evidence,” he said.
“It’s upsetting, it’s scary and it is traumatising.”
Theo has had a Palestinian flag on display outside his home since the recent conflict broke out with Israel.
The flag is above a chalkboard with Theo’s handwritten notes with his thoughts on the Israel-Hamas conflict.
But he said despite the bomb threat, both the flag and sign will remain on display.
Fellow locals also expressed concerns about the bomb scare – real or not.
“It’s scary. Whether it was fake or if it was real… It makes you feel that what if someone is crazy enough to do something,” one woman said.
The police investigation is continuing.
Over 22,800 Palestinians have been killed in the war, mostly women and minors, according to the Health Ministry in Hamas-ruled Gaza, which does not differentiate between civilian and combatant deaths.
Hamas’ October 7 attack from the Gaza Strip into southern Israel killed around 1200 people, mostly civilians, and some 250 others were taken hostage.
It was the worst such attack in Israel’s history.
Since Israel’s retaliation with sustained air strikes, brutal artillery bombardments and a ground offensive, 85 per cent of Gaza’s population of 2.3 million have fled their homes.
Most have sought shelter in Israeli-designated safe zones in southern Gaza.
Israel has held Hamas responsible for civilian casualties, saying the group embeds itself within Gaza’s civilian infrastructure.
International criticism of Israel’s conduct has grown because of the rising civilian death toll.