Wednesday, Dec 07, 2022

Shooting In Israel: 2 Killed, 13 Injured, Gunman Shot Dead

Shooting In Israel: 2 Killed, 13 Injured, Gunman Shot Dead

Thirteen people have been killed in a wave of terrorist attacks in Israel in recent weeks.

Israel's PM Bennet talking to security forces personnel after a recent attack
Israel's PM Bennet talking to security forces personnel after a recent attack Israel PMO

Israeli police on Friday shot dead the gunman who had fled after killing two persons and injuring 13 others in the central Tel Aviv area on Thursday evening. 

Four people among 13 injured are reported to be critical. 

The attack took place when the area was packed with people enjoying the start of the weekend and shopping ahead of the Passover holiday in Israel.

The assailant, identified as 29-year-old Ra’ad Fathi Zaydan from the Jenin area in the West Bank, was shot dead in Jaffa area early on Friday morning after Israel launched a massive manhunt deploying over a thousand police officers, including elite police and military units.

The two men killed in the shooting incident were aged 27 and 28 years old, security officials said.

The shooting incident has come at a time when Israel is struggling with a string of terror attacks over the past three weeks that has caused loss of 13 lives so far.

The assailant, who according to witnesses was armed with a pistol, opened fire toward Ilka bar on Dizengoff Street.

Police said a preliminary investigation suggested that shortly before the shooting, the assailant was walking around Dizengoff Street, apparently looking for a crowded area.

A security official said he was documented sitting on a bench near the Ilka bar for 15 minutes before he launched the attack.

Speaking after the attack, Prime Minister Naftali Bennett vowed to make everyone involved in the attack "pay the price".

He said, "This was a very difficult night. My condolences are with the families of the murdered, and I pray for the full recovery of the injured.

"Security forces are searching for the terrorist who committed tonight's murderous rampage in Tel Aviv. Wherever the terrorist is, we will find him. And every person who aided him in his mission will pay the price."

The Prime Minister's Office in a statement said Bennett was briefed throughout the night on efforts to find the Tel Aviv terrorist.

The statement came after news that the gunman was found and killed by security forces.

Meanwhile, the Islamic Jihad and Hamas praised the attack and said that it was a natural response to Israeli escalation against the Palestinian people and the damage being inflicted on holy sites, particularly Al Aqsa Mosque.

Islamist Hamas that controls the Gaza Strip issued a statement with Hamas spokesman Abdelatif Al-Qanou saying that "the heroic attack in the heart of the (Israeli) entity has struck the Zionist security system and proved our people's ability to hurt the occupation".

Israel has faced a wave of terror attacks over the past month. On March 22, four Israelis were killed in a stabbing attack in Beersheba, on March 27 two border police officers were killed in a shooting attack in Hadera, on March 30 two Israeli civilians, two Ukrainian nationals and a police officer were killed in a shooting attack in Bnei Brak.

Bennett on Tuesday claimed that Israel has thwarted over 15 terror attacks over the past two weeks, calling the wave of attacks that have killed 11 people "a wake-up call".

Tensions have been high since the start of the holiday of Ramadan earlier this month.

In 2016, a shooting attack had taken place in the same area. 

With AP inputs