Sun | Jun 16, 2024

Palestinian gunman kills seven near Jerusalem synagogue

Published:Friday | January 27, 2023 | 4:18 PM
Members of Zaka Rescue and Recovery team evacuate a body after a shooting attack near a synagogue in Jerusalem, Friday, January 27, 2023. AP Photo/Mahmoud Illean)

JERUSALEM (AP) — A Palestinian gunman opened fire outside an east Jerusalem synagogue Friday night, killing seven people, including a 70-year-old woman, and wounding three others before police shot and killed him, officials said.

It was the deadliest attack on Israelis in years and raised the likelihood of further bloodshed.

The attack, which took place as worshippers were celebrating the Jewish Sabbath, came a day after an Israeli military raid killed nine people in the West Bank.

The new attack set off public celebrations in both the occupied West Bank and Gaza Strip, where people fired guns into the air, honked car horns and distributed sweets.

The burst of violence, which also included a rocket barrage from Gaza and retaliatory Israeli airstrikes, has posed an early challenge for Israel's new government, which is dominated by ultranationalists who have pushed for a hard line against Palestinian violence.

It also cast a cloud over a visit by U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken to the region Sunday.

Israeli police said the attack occurred in Neve Yaakov, a Jewish area in east Jerusalem.

Jerusalem police chief Doron Turjeman told reporters the shooter was killed after trying to escape. He confirmed seven deaths, in addition to the shooter, and said three people were wounded.

Police identified the attacker as a 21-year-old east Jerusalem resident who apparently acted alone.

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