Monday, June 29, 2015

29-Jun-15: Drive-by shooting attack near Shvut Rachel tonight [UPDATE]

It's a little after 11 on Monday night here in Jerusalem and Israel's news channels are suddenly crackling with reports of a drive-by shooting attack near Shvut Rachel, with indications that three people inside a single car are injured. Our post earlier today ["29-Jun-15: Fresh reasons today to appreciate Jerusalem's alert security personnel"] described additional terrorist attacks in the Jerusalem area. This time of year has a certain sickening attraction for the many in our area who have terrorism on their minds.

Via Israel National News, we understand that three people are seriously injured including one who is unconscious. They are being treated by paramedics at the scene, and currently awaiting the arrival of an evacuation helicopter to airlift them to a hospital.

Wikipedia's entry for Shvut Rachel absurdly calls the little village of about 110 families "a city". The Rachel part of its name honours Rachela Druk of the nearby community of Shilo, a mother of 7 who was murdered in a Palestinian Arab terror attack  on the civilian bus on which she was traveling in November 1991. The prolific Yisrael Medad blogged some helpful background in 2012 about Shvut Rachel and how it has been developing.

UPDATE Tuesday morning June 30, 2015: There were, it is now clear, four Israeli victims in the shooting last night. Ynet says the injuries of one are defined as serious, and those of the three others as moderate. All four are in their twenties, and all were struck by bullets in both upper and lower parts of their bodies. Two are hospitalized at Hadassah Ein Karem, and two at Shaarei Zedek Medical Center. The IDF has thrown up roadblocks and checkpoints throughout the area and large forces, including from the elite Special Forces Duvdevan Unit, are scouring the area for leads. Though we called it a drive-by shooting last night, it appears it might have been an ambush in which the shooters available themselves of an escape vehicle.

UPDATE Tuesday evening June 30, 2015: One of the four victims of last night's shooting has died of his injuries. He is Malachi Moshe Rosenfeld z"l. Like the others in the car, he lived in Kochav Hashachar, a community of some 300 families, located in the Binyamin district, roughly half an hour's drive north of Jerusalem.

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