One killed, another wounded in suspected terror stabbing at Karmiel mall
Terror attackKarmiel is Pittsburgh's Partnership2Gether City

One killed, another wounded in suspected terror stabbing at Karmiel mall

Unidentified assailant shot dead by one of his victims, police say; security camera footage from nearby store captures incident

The aftermath of a terror stabbing at a mall in Karmiel, July 3, 2024 (Magen David Adom)
The aftermath of a terror stabbing at a mall in Karmiel, July 3, 2024 (Magen David Adom)

A man was killed and a second man was wounded in a terror stabbing attack at a shopping mall in the northern city of Karmiel on Wednesday, police and medics said.

The assailant was not immediately identified, according to police.

Karmiel is one of Pittsburgh’s Partnership2Gether sister cities.

The Magen David Adom ambulance service said that two men in their 20s were taken to Galilee Medical Center in Nahariya. They were listed in critical and serious condition, according to MDA. One of them was later declared dead.

Northern District Police Chief Shuki Tahauko said that one of the two men wounded in the attack managed to shoot the attacker and “neutralize” him, adding that the terrorist had arrived at the mall on foot.

Security officials later identified the assailant as Jawwad Omar Rubia, an Israeli citizen from the Arab town of Nahf.

Security camera footage from a store in the mall captured the attack. The video showed the assailant attacking an individual, who then opened fire at him.

Senior law enforcement officers were holding an assessment at the scene of the attack, police said.

Israel Police spokesman Eli Levy said security forces did not immediate rule out the possibility that there were additional threats in the area.

“Naturally, we are familiar with this type of attacks, and we need to rule out the possibility that there are additional terrorists in the vicinity,” he said.

Karmiel Mayor Moshe Koninski told the Kan broadcaster, “Unfortunately, we are experiencing such an event for the first time… It is an old shopping center that is used by most of the area. I hear a lot of speculation about the identity of the [assailant], but we will let the police complete their investigation.”

“I really hope it’s not a resident of the area,” he added. “There are weeds everywhere, among Jews and Arabs alike.”

Karmiel has seen a growing influx of upper-middle class Arab professionals in recent years, one of several cities around the country seeing trends of de facto segregation fall by the wayside.

The northern city was one of several communities that were strategically established starting in the mid-1960s as part of a government attempt to expand the Jewish presence in the Galilee, where Arabs made up most of the population.

The police spokesman also pointed to a rise in incitement to terror amid the ongoing war against Hamas in Gaza, according to Ynet.

“Incitement to terrorism is running rampant on social networks. At the same time, together with the Shin Bet and the Israel Defense Forces, we are destroying a lot of terrorist infrastructure and thwarting many attacks,” he was quoted as saying.

Hamas meanwhile praised the attack in Karmiel, releasing a statement calling it a “natural response” to Israel’s operations in Gaza and the West Bank. The terror group described the assailant as “one of the heroes of our people,” but did not claim responsibility for the stabbing, while hailing attacks on Israeli civilians and soldiers as the only way to “defend the rights” of Palestinians and to “liberate their land.”

Tensions in Israel and the West Bank have soared since October 7, when terrorists burst through the Gaza border into Israel in a Hamas-led attack, killing some 1,200 people and seizing 251 hostages.

Since then, 21 Israelis, including security personnel, have been killed in Palestinian terror attacks in Israel and the West Bank. PJC

Times of Israel staff contributed to this report.

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