Eight Injured in Shooting in Jerusalem

Posted on

JERUSALEM — At least eight people were injured by gunfire outside the walls of the Old City of Jerusalem early Sunday in a shooting that the Israeli authorities described as a terrorist attack.

Two victims were in serious condition, one of them a pregnant woman who later gave birth. The police said the gunman, identified by Israeli broadcasters as a Palestinian man from East Jerusalem, later surrendered and was arrested.

The shooting compounded tensions in the region less than a week after Israel and Palestinian militants had reached a cease-fire to end three days of fighting over Gaza that left dozens of Palestinians dead, including children as well as militant commanders. It was the most violent militant attack since a surge in Palestinian violence during the spring that killed at least 19 Israelis and foreigners before ebbing in May.

The police said the gunman fired at a bus and other passing vehicles on a road that winds around the southern walls of the Old City shortly before 1:30 a.m., before escaping for several hours. The shooting occurred southwest of the Old City’s Jewish Quarter and the Western Wall — and close to the Temple Mount, the most contested holy site in the city, known to Muslims as the Aqsa Mosque compound.

After an hourslong manhunt, the police said that the gunman had been arrested and his weapon seized after he presented himself voluntarily to officers. The Israeli public broadcaster, Kan, identified him as a Palestinian resident of Silwan, a neighborhood in East Jerusalem, just south of the site of the shooting, that has experienced long-running friction between its Palestinian residents and a small but growing number of Israeli settlers.

Sacred to both Jews and Muslims, the nearby Temple Mount houses the third-holiest mosque in Islam and was the location in antiquity of two ancient Jewish temples that remain important to Jewish identity.

In recent months, it was the site of several clashes between Palestinian stone-throwers and Israeli riot police, amid Muslim anger at the Israeli authorities for quietly easing restrictions on Jewish prayer at the site, ending decades of convention that barred the practice.

After the attack on Sunday morning, an ambulance service, Magen David Adom, said its medics found two men with gunshot wounds on a bus that had stopped on a road near the Western Wall, one of the last remaining parts of a retaining wall that surrounded an ancient Jewish temple.

The responders also found four more men with gunshot wounds at a parking area nearby. A seventh victim, the pregnant woman, was also treated for gunshot wounds and later gave birth at Shaare Zedek Medical Center, a hospital in Jerusalem, the center said. An eighth person was also injured, Kan reported. The United States ambassador to Israel, Thomas R. Nides, said on Twitter that some of the injured people were Americans.

All of the victims were conscious and were sent to hospitals for further treatment, but the mother and baby, as well as a Hasidic Jewish man, were in serious condition, Kan said.

Prime Minister Yair Lapid thanked Israeli security forces for their work and said in a statement, “All those who seek our harm should know that they will pay a price for any harm to our civilians.”

Hamas, the Islamist militant group that runs the Gaza Strip, praised the attack but did not claim responsibility for it. The group said in a statement on its website that the attack was a response to the recent Israeli airstrikes on Gaza and a recent Israeli raid on Nablus, a Palestinian city in the occupied West Bank.

The Old City of Jerusalem is frequently at the heart of tensions between Israelis and Palestinians. Israel captured the area, along with the rest of East Jerusalem, from Jordan during the Arab-Israeli war of 1967, and today the country considers the entire city its united capital.

But most of the world considers East Jerusalem occupied territory, and Palestinians hope that the area, including the Old City and its holy sites, will one day form the capital of a Palestinian state.

Tensions frequently flare in Palestinian neighborhoods of East Jerusalem, partly as a result of efforts to evict Palestinians that some settler leaders say are an attempt to prevent the city ever leaving Israeli control.

There is particular friction in Silwan, now a mainly Palestinian neighborhood that many experts believe was once the biblical City of David — the original capital of the Israelite King David 3,000 years ago. Israeli efforts to build archaeological and tourism attractions in Silwan, mostly celebrating the area’s ancient Jewish heritage, are perceived by Palestinians as a means of eroding Palestinian claims to the city.

Patrick Kingsley reported from Jerusalem, and Vivek Shankar from Seoul. Tiffany May contributed reporting from Hong Kong, and Myra Noveck from Jerusalem.

Jasaseosmm.com Smm Panel is the best and cheapest smm reseller panel Buy Spotify Promotion for instant Instagram likes and followers, Buy Verification Badge, Youtube views and subscribers, TikTok followers, telegram services, and many other smm services. telegram, and many other smm services.