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7 Palestinians Killed By A Gunman Near Synagogue In Jerusalem

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7 Palestinians Killed By A Gunman Near Synagogue In Jerusalem

(CTN NEWS) – JERUSALEM – Friday night, a Palestinian gunman opened fire outside an east Jerusalem synagogue, killing seven people—including a woman in her 70s—and injuring three more.

He was later shot and killed by police, according to officials. It increased the risk of additional bloodshed and was the bloodiest attack on Israelis in recent memory.

The strike happened a day after an Israeli military incursion in the West Bank that claimed the lives of nine Palestinians and took place as locals observed the Jewish Sabbath.

The incident on Friday sparked celebrations in the Gaza Strip and the occupied West Bank, where people fired weapons into the air, honked horns and gave out candy.

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The outbreak of violence has presented an early challenge for Israel’s new administration, which is predominated by ultranationalists who have campaigned for a firm line against Palestinian violence.

It also included a rocket bombardment from Gaza and retaliatory Israeli airstrikes. Additionally, it tainted Sunday’s visit by U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken to the area.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told reporters at the national police headquarters in Israel that he had conducted a security assessment and made a decision on “urgent actions.”

He said that he would meet with his Security Cabinet on Saturday night, following the conclusion of the Sabbath, to discuss an additional response.

Netanyahu chose not to go into further detail but promised that Israel would act “determinately and calmly.” He urged the populace to refrain from enforcing the law themselves.

Speaking on International Holocaust Remembrance Day, White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said the United States strongly denounced the act and was “shocked and saddened” by the lives lost.

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Later on Friday, according to American sources, President Joe Biden phoned with Netanyahu to express U.S. support for the Israeli government and people and to describe the shootings as “an attack against the civilised world.”

The White House described the call as “the President stressed the ironclad U.S. commitment to Israel’s security.”

The shootings took place in Neve Yaakov, a settlement with a sizable ultra-Orthodox population, according to Israeli police, and the shooter left in a car. According to the police, they pursued and killed him after exchanging gunfire.

In addition to the shooter, Chief Doron Turjeman of the Jerusalem Police confirmed seven deaths and three injuries.

A 21-year-old citizen of east Jerusalem who appeared to act alone was the assailant, according to police. Turjeman vowed to make “aggressive and major” efforts to find anyone who assisted him.

A picture of the gun the police claim the attacker used was also made public by the police.

Yoav Gallant, Israel’s defense minister, met with the military chief and other top security officials and gave them orders to support police and bolster security for Jewish communities in the occupied West Bank and close to Jerusalem.

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Against terrorism, Israel’s defense establishment “will act decisively and forcefully” and “will reach anybody involved in the incident,” Gallant declared.

Five men and two women, many of whom were 60 years old or older, were among those who died, according to Israel’s MADA rescue service. According to Jerusalem’s Hadassah Hospital, a 15-year-old boy was recovering from surgery.

According to the Foreign Ministry, the attack was the bloodiest against Israelis since a massacre in 2008 that left eight people dead in a Jewish seminary in Jerusalem.

It could prompt a stern response from Israel, given the situation’s timing and location.

Several rockets were fired into southern Israel by Gaza militants overnight on Thursday, but every one was either stopped or fell into open spaces.

Israel’s response was to attack targets in Gaza with warplanes. No casualties were recorded, and before Friday night’s gunfire, tranquility seemed to settle in.

No one immediately took blame. The strike was “revenge and a natural response,” according to Hamas spokesman Hazem Qassem in Gaza, to the deadly IDF raid on Thursday.

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Dozens of Palestinians gathered in impromptu protests across the Gaza Strip to celebrate the incident in Jerusalem; some of them emerged from dessert shops carrying sizable trays of sweets to hand out.

Gunfire in celebration could be heard in Gaza City’s downtown as automobiles honked and shouts of “God is great!” came from mosque loudspeakers. Palestinians set off fireworks in several West Bank towns.

After a raid on Thursday in the Jenin refugee camp in the West Bank left nine people dead, including at least seven militants and a 61-year-old lady, tensions were already high.

The attack heightened those tensions. It was the West Bank’s worst single raid in 20 years. In separate clashes close to Jerusalem, a tenth Palestinian was murdered.

As they laid the final victim of those killed a day earlier to rest, furious Palestinians marched on Friday.

Disputes broke out between Israeli security forces and Palestinian protesters after the burial of a 22-year-old Palestinian north of Jerusalem and elsewhere in the occupied West Bank, but for most of the day.

Peace reigned in the conflicted city and the blockaded Gaza Strip.

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The shooting in east Jerusalem, which Yair Lapid, the opposition leader and former prime minister, called “horrific and devastating,” abruptly ended that.

Israel views the devout Jewish community’s settlement in Neve Yaakov as a part of its capital’s neighborhood.

While the Palestinians want to use east Jerusalem, which Israel took in the 1967 Middle East conflict, as the capital of their future state, Israel believes that all of Jerusalem is its undivided capital.

Blinken’s journey will likely now be mainly focused on reducing tensions.

He’ll probably talk about the root reasons of the conflict, the goals of Israel’s new far-right administration, and the PA’s decision to stop working with Israel on security matters in the wake of the Jenin raid.

White House National Security Council spokesman John Kirby noted that the Biden administration has been in close contact with Israeli.

And Palestinian leaders in recent days, highlighting the “urgent need here for all parties to deescalate to prevent the further loss of civilian life and to work together to improve the security situation in the West Bank.”

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Since the Islamist party seized control of Gaza from opposing forces in 2007, Israel and Hamas have engaged in four wars and a number of smaller clashes.

Following a string of Palestinian attacks, Israel increased its operations in the West Bank last spring, which heightened tensions.

According to the major Israeli rights organization B’Tselem, 2022 was the deadliest year in the West Bank and east Jerusalem since 2004 with close to 150 Palestinian deaths.

30 individuals were killed in Palestinian attacks on Israelis last year.

30 Palestinians have died this year so far, according to a tally by The Associated Press.

Most of those killed, according to Israel, were militants. However, adolescents opposing the intrusions and others who were not participating in the altercations have also perished.

Israel claims that the goals of its raids are to destroy extremist networks and prevent assaults. The West Bank, east Jerusalem, and the Gaza Strip were all taken by Israel during the Mideast War of 1967, adding to its 55-year, unrestricted occupation, according to the Palestinians.

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Alishba Waris is an independent journalist working for CTN News. She brings a wealth of experience and a keen eye for detail to her reporting. With a knack for uncovering the truth, Waris isn't afraid to ask tough questions and hold those in power accountable. Her writing is clear, concise, and cuts through the noise, delivering the facts readers need to stay informed. Waris's dedication to ethical journalism shines through in her hard-hitting yet fair coverage of important issues.

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