Seven dead in attack on synagogue as West Bank violence spirals

A gunman killed at least seven people and wounded ten others in a synagogue on the outskirts of Jerusalem today.

It is feared the attack could spark violence, a day after the deadliest Israeli attack on the West Bank in years.

Police said the gunman arrived around 8:15 p.m. and opened fire, hitting several people before he was killed by police. Television footage showed several victims lying on the street in front of the synagogue being treated by rescue workers.

The attack, which police described as a “terrorist incident,” underscored fears of escalating violence after months of clashes in the West Bank that culminated in a crackdown on Thursday that killed at least nine Palestinians.

There was initially no accountability for the synagogue attack, which took place as believers attended Sabbath services on International Holocaust Remembrance Day, but a spokesman for the Islamist movement Hamas said the incidents were linked.

“This operation is a response to the occupation’s crime in Jenin and a natural response to the occupation’s criminal actions,” said Hamas spokesman Hazem Qassem. The smaller Islamic Jihad militant group also praised the attack without admitting responsibility.

Israeli media said the gunman was a Palestinian resident of East Jerusalem, but there was no official confirmation.

The Israeli Foreign Ministry said seven people were killed, but the emergency services put the number of dead at five.

In Gaza, news of the attack sparked spontaneous rallies in the streets, accompanied by a burst of celebratory gunfire.

Today’s shooting came days ahead of a scheduled visit by US Secretary of State Antony Blinken to Israel and the West Bank. The State Department issued a statement condemning the attack and saying there were no changes to Blinken’s travel plans.

Earlier today, Israeli jets attacked Gaza in retaliation for rocket attacks that triggered alarms in Israeli communities near the border of the blocked southern coastal strip controlled by Hamas.

In August, Israeli jets bombed targets in Gaza linked to the group during a weekend confrontation that saw hundreds of Islamic Jihad missiles fired against Israel, most of which were intercepted by air defense systems.


Months of violence in the West Bank, escalating after a string of deadly attacks in Israel last year, have raised fears that the already unpredictable conflict could spiral out of control and spark a broader confrontation between Palestinians and Israel.

The latest season of violence began under the previous coalition government and continued after the election of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s new right-wing government, which includes ultra-nationalist parties keen to expand settlements in the West Bank.

After Thursday’s raid, the Palestinian Authority, which has limited governmental powers in the West Bank, said it was suspending a security cooperation agreement with Israel.

At Jenin refugee camp, a tightly packed mass of buildings and alleyways that has been a hub of militant activity and the target of repeated Israeli raids, residents said Thursday’s operation penetrated unusually deeply into the camp.

A two-story building in the center of the fighting was badly damaged and surrounding houses were black with smoke. In another area around the camp’s community center, cars had been crushed by Israeli bulldozers used in the operation.

The US State Department issued a statement on Thursday saying it was deeply concerned about the violence in the West Bank and called on both sides to de-escalate the conflict.

The United Nations, Egypt and Qatar have also called for calm, Palestinian officials said.

Palestinian officials said CIA Director William Burns, who was visiting Israel and the West Bank on a trip arranged before the latest violence, will meet Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas on Saturday. No comment was immediately available from US officials in Jerusalem.

Netanyahu, who returned to power this year at the head of one of the most right-wing governments in Israel’s history, said Israel did not want to escalate the situation, despite ordering security forces to be on alert. Seven dead in attack on synagogue as West Bank violence spirals

Fry Electronics Team

Fry is an automatic aggregator of the all world’s media. In each content, the hyperlink to the primary source is specified. All trademarks belong to their rightful owners, all materials to their authors. If you are the owner of the content and do not want us to publish your materials, please contact us by email – The content will be deleted within 24 hours.

Related Articles

Back to top button