7 killed, several hurt in shooting attack at Jerusalem synagogue; terrorist shot
Police say officers killed gunman who fled scene of attack at Neve Yaakov neighborhood, opened fire on forces
Seven people were shot and killed and several more wounded in a terror shooting attack at a synagogue in Jerusalem’s Neve Yaakov neighborhood, police and medics said Friday night.
According to police, the terrorist arrived by car at around 8:15 p.m. at a building used as a synagogue in the neighborhood in the northern part of East Jerusalem and opened fire.
The attacker then fled the scene toward the Palestinian neighborhood of Beit Hanina — about a kilometer (0.6 miles) away — where he encountered officers who were called to the scene.
Police said the terrorist — a resident of East Jerusalem — was shot dead after he opened fire on the officers while trying to escape on foot.
A handgun used in the attack was seized.
According to Channel 12 news, the terrorist first shot an elderly woman in the street, then encountered a motorcycle rider and shot him, before reaching the synagogue. Police did not immediately confirm the details.
The Magen David Adom ambulance service said its medics declared five victims dead at the scene.
Three victims — a woman in her 70s listed in critical condition, a 20-year-old man in serious condition, and a 14-year-old boy in moderate-serious condition — were taken to the Hadassah Mount Scopus hospital. Another two victims — a man in his 30s in critical condition and a woman in her 60s in moderate condition — were taken to the Shaare Zedek hospital.
Jerusalem District Police Commander Doron Turgeman, speaking to reporters at the scene, said two of the wounded victims had died, bringing the death toll to seven.
Dozens of officers were dispatched to the scene, police said.
National Security Minister Itamar Ben Gvir, who is in charge of police, arrived at the scene of the attack.
Defense Minister Yoav Gallant, who was in the United States for a personal trip, was to head back to Israel on Friday night following the attack, his office said.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was set to hold an assessment with top security officials.
Local residents told Channel 12 news that it took 20 minutes for the police to arrive. “It’s a disgrace,” one man said.
Police responded to the accusation saying officers had arrived at the scene and killed the terrorist within five minutes of the first reports of gunfire.
Friday’s deadly attack came following days of violence in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip. Tensions have increased dramatically since Thursday morning, when an Israel Defense Forces raid in the West Bank against a terrorist cell left nine Palestinians dead — most of them gunmen and members of the cell, though at least one civilian was also killed.
Thursday overnight saw rocket fire from Palestinian terror groups in Gaza and Israeli retaliatory air strikes as both sides appeared intent on avoiding an escalation into a full-scale war.
Tensions were also high in Jerusalem and the Temple Mount on Friday, though Muslim prayers went ahead without issue. PJC