Four die as truck rams into pedestrians in Israel
JERUSALEM: A truck driven by a Palestinian rammed into pedestrians on a popular promenade in Jerusalem yesterday, killing four people, according to Israeli police who called it a deliberate attack.
“It’s a terrorist attack, a ramming attack,” police spokesperson Luba Samri said on Israel Radio.
Police said the dead, three women and one man, were all in their twenties.
An Israeli bus driver who witnessed the incident said on the radio the truck ploughed into a group of soldiers, and that they fired on the driver, who reversed direction and ran over them again.
“They shot him, until they neutralised him,” said the bus driver, who gave his name only as Moshe. Israeli TV stations said the driver was killed, and footage showed bullet holes in the truck’s windscreen.
Israeli television stations said at least four people were killed and that about 15 wounded were strewn on the street at the Armon Hanatziv promenade overlooking the walled Old City of Jerusalem.
Israel Radio reported the driver was a Palestinian but did not immediately give his name.
A wave of Palestinian street attacks, including vehicle rammings, has largely slowed but not stopped completely since it began in October 2015.
The attack comes amid a more than one year-long wave of Palestinian shooting, stabbing and vehicular attacks against Israelis that has slowed of late. Yesterday’s incident marks the first Israeli casualties in three months.
Since September 2015, Palestinian attackers have killed 40 Israelis and two visiting Americans. During that time, 229 Palestinians have been killed by Israeli fire. Israel said most of the Palestinians killed were attackers while the rest died in clashes.
Israel said the violence was driven by a Palestinian campaign of incitement, while Palestinians said it’s the result of nearly 50 years of Israeli occupation and dwindling hopes for an independent state. – Reuters and AP
Israeli rescue forces work at the scene of a truck-ramming incident in Jerusalem that claimed the lives of four Israelis.