(photo credit: JPOST STAFF)
A soldier in southern Israel took his life on Wednesday night, becoming the first suicide of the new year, the IDF Spokesperson’s Unit said.
The death occurred on a military base and the soldier is suspected of having used his own weapon.
The incident came one day after the military released data that showed 16 IDF soldiers committed suicide in 2017, the leading cause of death among Israeli troops for the year.
Self-inflicted deaths are officially classified as “suspected suicides” until Military Police complete their investigation.
Israel sees an average of 400 to 500 suicides every year. The number of cases among men aged 15 to 24 has dramatically decreased in recent years, from 11.7 per 100,000 from 2001 through 2003 to 5.5 per 100,000 from 2011 through 2013.