HomeWorldPalestinian gunman kills 7 near Jerusalem synagogue

Palestinian gunman kills 7 near Jerusalem synagogue

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JERUSALEM — A Palestinian gunman opened hearth exterior an east Jerusalem synagogue Friday night time, killing seven folks, together with a 70-year-old lady, and wounding three others earlier than he was shot and killed by police, officers mentioned. It was the deadliest assault on Israelis in years and raised the chance of extra bloodshed.

The assault, which occurred as residents had been observing the Jewish sabbath, got here a day after an Israeli navy raid killed 9 Palestinians within the West Financial institution. Friday’s capturing set off celebrations in each the occupied West Financial institution and Gaza Strip, the place folks fired weapons into the air, honked horns and distributed sweets.

The burst of violence, which additionally included a rocket barrage from Gaza and retaliatory Israeli airstrikes, has posed an early problem for Israel’s new authorities, which is dominated by ultranationalists who’ve pushed for a tough line in opposition to Palestinian violence. It additionally solid a cloud over a visit by U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken to the area Sunday.

Addressing reporters at Israel’s nationwide police headquarters, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu mentioned he had held a safety evaluation and selected “speedy actions.” He mentioned he would convene his Safety Cupboard on Saturday night time, after the top of the sabbath, to debate an extra response.

Netanyahu declined to elaborate however mentioned Israel would act with “dedication and composure.” He known as on the general public to not take the legislation into their very own palms.

White Home Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre mentioned the U.S. strongly condemned the assault and was “shocked and saddened by the lack of life,” noting it got here on Worldwide Holocaust Remembrance Day.

U.S. officers mentioned later Friday that President Joe Biden spoke with Netanyahu to supply U.S. help to the federal government and folks of Israel, calling the shootings “an assault in opposition to the civilized world.” “The President careworn the iron-clad U.S. dedication to Israel’s safety,” the White Home mentioned of the decision.

Israeli police mentioned the shootings occurred in Neve Yaakov, a settlement with a big ultra-Orthodox inhabitants, and that the gunman fled in a automotive. Police mentioned they chased after him and after an alternate of fireside, killed him.

Jerusalem police chief Doron Turjeman confirmed seven deaths, along with the shooter, and mentioned three folks had been wounded.

Police recognized the attacker as a 21-year-old east Jerusalem resident who apparently acted alone. Turjeman promised an “aggressive and vital” effort to trace down anybody who helped him.

Police additionally launched a photograph of the pistol it mentioned was utilized by the attacker.

Protection Minister Yoav Gallant huddled with Israel’s navy chief and different high safety officers and instructed them to help police and strengthen defenses close to Jerusalem and for Jewish settlements within the occupied West Financial institution.

“Israel’s protection institution will function decisively and forcefully in opposition to terror and can attain anybody concerned within the assault,” Gallant mentioned.

Israel’s MADA rescue service mentioned that these killed included 5 males and two girls, amongst them a number of who had been 60 or older. Jerusalem’s Hadassah Hospital mentioned a 15-year-old boy was recovering from surgical procedure.

The assault was the deadliest on Israelis since a 2008 capturing killed eight folks in a Jewish seminary in Jerusalem, in keeping with the International Ministry. Given the placement and timing, it threatened to set off a tricky response from Israel.

In a single day Thursday, Gaza militants fired a number of rockets into southern Israel, with all of them both intercepted or touchdown in open areas. Israel responded with airstrikes on targets in Gaza. No casualties had been reported, and calm had gave the impression to be taking maintain earlier than Friday night time’s capturing.

There was no speedy declare of duty. In Gaza, Hazem Qassem, spokesman for the ruling Hamas militant group, mentioned the assault was “a revenge and pure response” to the lethal navy raid Thursday.

At a number of places throughout the Gaza Strip, dozens of Palestinians gathered in spontaneous demonstrations to have fun the Jerusalem assault, with some popping out of dessert outlets with massive trays of sweets to distribute.

In downtown Gaza Metropolis, celebratory gunfire could possibly be heard, as automobiles honked and calls of “God is nice!” wafted from mosque loudspeakers. In varied West Financial institution cities, Palestinians launched fireworks.

The assault escalated tensions that had been already heightened following Thursday’s raid within the West Financial institution refugee camp of Jenin, the place 9 folks, together with no less than seven militants and a 61-year-old lady, had been killed. It was the deadliest single raid within the West Financial institution in 20 years. A tenth Palestinian was killed in separate combating close to Jerusalem.

Offended Palestinians marched Friday as they buried the final of these killed a day earlier.

Scuffles between Israeli forces and Palestinian protesters erupted after the funeral for a 22-year-old Palestinian north of Jerusalem and elsewhere within the occupied West Financial institution, however calm prevailed within the contested capital and within the blockaded Gaza Strip for many of the day.

That instantly dissolved with the east Jerusalem capturing, described as “horrific and heartbreaking” by Yair Lapid, the opposition chief and former prime minister.

Neve Yaakov is a non secular Jewish settlement that Israel considers to be a neighborhood of its capital. Israel claims all of Jerusalem as its undivided capital, whereas the Palestinians search east Jerusalem, captured by Israel within the 1967 Mideast conflict, as a capital of their future state.

Blinken’s journey will in all probability now focus closely on decreasing tensions. He’s prone to focus on the underlying causes of the battle, the agenda of Israel’s new far-right authorities and the Palestinian Authority’s choice to halt safety coordination with Israel in response to the Jenin raid.

The Biden administration has been deeply engaged with Israeli and Palestinian leaders in current days, White Home Nationwide Safety Council spokesman John Kirby mentioned, underscoring the “pressing want right here for all events to deescalate to stop the additional lack of civilian life and to work collectively to enhance the safety state of affairs within the West Financial institution.”

Israel and Hamas have fought 4 wars and a number of other smaller skirmishes for the reason that militant group seized energy in Gaza from rival forces in 2007.

Tensions have soared since Israel stepped up raids within the West Financial institution final spring, following a collection of Palestinian assaults.

Practically 150 Palestinians had been killed within the West Financial institution and east Jerusalem in 2022, making it the deadliest year in those territories since 2004, in keeping with main Israeli rights group B’Tselem. Final yr, 30 folks had been killed in Palestinian assaults in opposition to Israelis.

To this point this yr, 30 Palestinians have been killed, in keeping with a rely by The Related Press.

Israel says many of the lifeless had been militants. However youths protesting the incursions and others not concerned within the confrontations even have been killed.

Israel says its raids are supposed to dismantle militant networks and thwart assaults. The Palestinians say they additional entrench Israel’s 55-year, open-ended occupation of the West Financial institution, captured together with east Jerusalem and the Gaza Strip within the 1967 Mideast conflict.

Related Press author Jon Gambrell in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, contributed.

Supply: www.washingtonpost.com

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