June 10, 2023


A six-year-old boy was killed and another child left critically hurt after a car plowed into people at a bus stop in Jerusalem Friday — in what authorities are describing as a terror attack.

A man in his 20s also died after the blue Mazda rammed into the group of people waiting near the Ramot neighborhood, The Times of Israel reported.

Police are describing the Friday incident as a terrorist attack, according to the outlet.

The attacker, identified by Haaretz as Hussein Qaraqe, 31, was shot dead by an officer at the scene. Qaraqe, a father of three from Bethlehem, rented an apartment in the Palestinian neighborhood of Isawiyah in east Jerusalem, Haaretz reported. 

“When we arrived at the scene, the sight was shocking,” Magen David Adom ambulance service medic Shraga Rosenthal told The Times of Israel.

“We saw six victims lying next to each other, among them, two were children about 6 years old who were unconscious with severe multisystem trauma.”

The wife of the male victim, an ultra-Orthodox man who was married two months ago, is also in serious condition, according to i24News.

Also among the injured was an eight-year-old child left in critical condition at Shaare Zadek Medical Center. Several members of the same family who were waiting at the bus stop together are believed to be among the injured, according to The Times of Israel.

Uniformed responders at the scene where a car plowed into a group of people at a bus stop. A smashed blue Mazda is clearly seen surrounded by police tape.
First responders and forensic workers on the scene after a car crashed into a bus stop, killing two people, in east Jerusalem.

The destroyed bus station seen in the aftermath of the car attack. The blue car is stuck halfway through the glass awning.
Several others were injured in the attack, including another child who is in critical condition.

The attacker’s mental health deteriorated after he was injured in a construction accident six months ago, a source close to Qaraqe told Haaretz.

The Palestinian Islamic Jihad and Hamas praised the attack, but did not explicitly claim responsibility, The Times of Israel reported.

In a statement shared on Twitter, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu praised the police who responded to the scene. He also said forces had been deployed “to seal the terrorist’s house and demolish it,” per Israeli policy.

Police tape surrounds the scene of the attack.
The attacker was shot dead at the scene.

President Isaac Herzog lamented that the attack came hours before the onset of Shabbat, the Jewish day of rest which begins at sundown on Friday.

“Together with the People of Israel I grieve with the families & pray for the recovery of the injured,” he tweeted.

Roadblocks had been set up around Qaraqe’s neighborhood, Israel’s National Security Minister Itamar Ben-Gvir told The Times of Israel.

Police wearing tactical gear and carrying machine guns patrol the area around the site of the attack.
President Isaac Herzog lamented that the attack came hours before the onset of Shabbat.

Ben-Gvir is a member of the far-right Otzma Yehudit party, which is described by the Jewish National Library’s database as “ultra-nationalist and anti-Arab.” Ben-Gvir himself was previously convicted of inciting terrorism and racism against Palestinians.

In the aftermath of Friday’s attack, Ben Gvir told The Times of Israel that he wanted to “completely besiege” Isawiyah, but was blocked by potential legal conflicts.

The Friday car-ramming comes amid ongoing violence across Israel and Palestine. Just weeks ago, a gunman killed seven people near a Jerusalem synagogue on International Holocaust Remembrance Day. The massacre came after nine people were killed in an Israeli raid in the West Bank town of Jenin.

A police tent surrounded by uniformed responders near the attack scene.
Several Israeli politicians reacted to the Friday carnage.

In the wake of the synagogue shooting, White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said the US was “shocked and saddened by the loss of life.”

“The United States will extend our full support to the government and people of Israel,” she said.


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