Deadly attack near Jerusalem is ‘terrorism’ – Netanyahu
Hamas has described the incident as a “heroic operation” but has not claimed responsibility
Two people, including a six-year-old boy, were killed and several others injured when a car plowed into a group standing at a bus stop just outside Jerusalem on Friday. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has condemned the incident as a terrorist attack.
At least five others were injured in the car-ramming, which occurred at a Jewish settlement near East Jerusalem’s Ramot neighborhood. The victims were waiting for a bus at the time of the incident, with one person understood to be in critical condition. Police have said that the driver was shot dead at the scene by officers.
“Everyone was lying out, thrown about, in very bad condition,” volunteer medic Ariel Ben-David told Army Radio. “To our regret, one child did not survive.”
Graphic footage shared on social media showed the aftermath of the incident, with several injured parties visible. It was reported that an armed civilian shot at the vehicle before police engaged it.
Israeli PM Netanyahu branded the incident a terrorist attack and ordered security to be bolstered in the region, as well as requesting that the suspected terrorist’s home be destroyed, in line with government policy.
“I conducted a security assessment and ordered an increase in forces, to carry out arrests and act immediately to seal the terrorist’s house and demolish it,” Netanyahu said.
A spokesman for Hamas, the Palestinian nationalist organization that controls Gaza, referred to the attack as a “heroic operation” but stopped short of claiming responsibility.
The incident comes amid increased tensions in the region. In late January, seven people were shot dead by a Palestinian gunman outside a synagogue in Jerusalem. That came just days after nine Palestinians were killed following an Israeli special forces operation in the city of Jenin in the northern West Bank.