Seven people were wounded in a terrorist car-ramming attack in Jerusalem on Monday.
The victims include a man in his 70s who is in serious condition, a woman in her 30s in moderate condition and a man in his 50s and two 25-year-old men who were lightly wounded.
The victims were taken to Shaare Zedek Medical Center and Hadassah-University Medical Center.
One of the victims was hospitalized due to shock, a Hadassah representative said.
The terrorist was identified as Hatem Abu Nijmeh, 39, of Beit Safafa in east Jerusalem. He was shot and killed by a civilian at the scene.
Terror in the heart of Jerusalem
Nijmeh was a married father of five who was unknown to security forces but reportedly had a history of mental illness.
The terrorist attack occurred in the area of Davidka Square about a block away from Mahaneh Yehuda market.
Nijmeh arrived at the intersection and sped up, deliberately hitting pedestrians, including people crossing the street, the police said. When he slowed down and then stopped, an armed civilian shot and killed him.
Minutes after the attack, security forces, off-duty soldiers, police and Jerusalem Light Rail security officers arrived at the scene. A crowd of Israelis and tourists gathered around the area and had to be shepherded aside to allow the evacuation of victims.
“I heard shots and told emergency services where I heard them. I didn’t want to believe it was a terrorist attack.”Bystander
“I heard [about five] shots and told emergency services where I heard them,” said one bystander. “I didn’t want to believe it was a terrorist attack... This won’t end unless we do more mitzvot and hasten the coming of Moshiach.”
One man said a terrorist attack was to be expected before Remembrance Day, and that Arab media would likely portray the terrorist as an innocent victim.
Another man said he “was going to the market to buy flags and meat,” but he went first to buy rice for his father. That decision changed his route and saved his life, he said.
A security guard at a nearby parking lot said he initially thought it sounded like a car crash, but when he heard shots, he approached the scene.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who spoke at a Remembrance Day ceremony in Jerusalem minutes after the attack took place, said it “reminds us that the State of Israel was bought with great suffering.”
"These terror attacks are carried out with the expectation that they will uproot us from here, if they could they would murder us all."Benjamin Netanyahu
“These terrorist attacks are carried out with the expectation that they will uproot us from here,” he said. “If they could, they would murder us all.”
National Security Minister Itamar Ben-Gvir spoke on the phone with the civilian who killed the terrorist.
“I wanted to congratulate you” for saving many lives, he said.
“The State of Israel thanks you for preventing a very big disaster,” Ben-Gvir said, adding that when he asked for the National Security Ministry’s Firearms Division to make getting access to guns easier for anyone who is qualified, it was for the goal of helping people defend themselves.
Hours after the attack, a small group of men and teenagers raised Israeli flags and a cardboard sign with the word “vengeance” scrawled on it.
“We want vengeance!” the group chanted. “Ben-Gvir, go home!”
When asked what was meant by the second chant, one of the men said Ben-Gvir “doesn’t do anything.”
Due to the terrorist attack, Light Rail service was halted from Davidka Station to Damascus Gate. The police said they would increase patrols and security activity throughout the city.
Jerusalem Post Staff contributed to this report.