A terrorist armed with a pistol and a knife stormed the Beersheba Central Bus Station on Sunday night, killing IDF soldier Sergeant Omri Levy, snatching his rifle and shooting and wounding at least 10 Israelis before being shot dead by police.
During the attack, armed security personnel mistook an Eritrean man for a second terrorist and opened fire, wounding him in the lower body. The man was then set upon by a mob that mistook him for a terrorist, beating him severely and leaving him in serious condition.
Negev police said officers who arrived at the scene shortly after 7:30 p.m. shot one terrorist dead and then began sealing off the area and searching for other possible assailants.
Hours after the attack police said they still had not determined the identity of the attacker, or how exactly he arrived at the station or managed to get through security at the entrances. They also could not rule out whether he was helped by accomplices who have yet to be apprehended.
“Inside the station there were several wounded and laid out over an area of about 30 meters, all of them in their late 20s,” said Gadi Abuhatzeira, deputy manager of Magen David Adom’s Negev district, describing the scene.
Soroka University Medical Center said 10 shooting victims were brought for treatment Sunday night, including one who arrived showing no signs of life; two others who were seriously wounded; and the rest lightly-to-moderately wounded, mainly with injuries to their extremities. Several others were treated for shock and released.
Four of those wounded are police officers, Negev subdistrict police said Sunday night.
Head of the Negev subdistrict Dep.-Ch. Amnon Alkalai said police had no prior intelligence or warning of the attack, and that they are still checking the area for possible accomplices.
Southern District Commander Asst.-Ch. Yoram HaLevy said police responded “very well” to the incident, adding that it appears the Eritrean man was on the other side of the station at the time of the attack and that when security personnel spotted him they mistaken believed he was an attacker and opened fire.
A video shot by a bystander afterwards shows an angry mob surrounding the Eritrean man, with one kicking him with great force in the head, while others curse him and another kicks him in the head.
Earlier in the day, Palestinians clashed with the IDF near Bet Hagai in the Mount Hebron region of the West Bank, and two rioters sustained injuries from low-caliber rifle rounds fired by soldiers.
An army spokeswoman said some 200 Palestinians hurled rocks at the army in the area, and that soldiers responded with crowd-dispersal measures and by shooting low-caliber rifle rounds.
Elsewhere in the West Bank, 100 Palestinians hurled firebombs and rocks at soldiers at Tulkarm. Soldiers responded by firing tear-gas canisters and rubber bullets. Three rioters were wounded in the incident, apparently from tear-gas inhalation.
Elsewhere, the IDF and some 60 Palestinians clashed outside of Ramallah. Two Palestinians were wounded by rubber bullets, according to the IDF, and a third from a bullet fired by a low-caliber rifle.