Terror shooting at Mercaz Harav Kook Yeshiva in Jerusalem

Terror in yeshiva library

 

A Palestinian terrorist infiltrated the Mercaz Haravyeshiva (rabbinical seminary) on Thursday evening and opened fire on a crowded library and study hall, killing eight people and wounding 11 others. The yeshiva, located in the Kiryat Moshe neighborhood near the entrance to Jerusalem, is home to several hundred students, most aged 18-30.

 Terror shooting at Mercaz Harav Kook Yeshiva in Jerusalem

Bloodstained prayer shawls in the Mercaz Harav Yeshiva library after terror shooting in which 8 were killed (Photo: GPO/Avi Ohayon)​​

On Thursday evening, the yeshiva students – mostly teenagers – had returned from prayers at the Western Wall. They were about to begin a party celebrating the beginning of the month of Adar – a month of joy marked by the Purim holiday. Many of the students had gathered in the yeshiva library before the party when the terrorist opened fire.

"God picks the most beautiful flowers for his garden," said the mother of 16-year-old Avraham David Moses, killed in the attack.

 Terror shooting at Mercaz Harav Kook Yeshiva in Jerusalem

Body on floor of yeshiva (Photo: GPO/Avi Ohayon)

Avraham David Moses, 16, was a dual U.S.-Israeli citizen; Segev Peniel Avihai, 15, was a French citizen; and Doron Meherete, 26, held dual Ethiopian-Israeli citizenship. Among those listed in serious condition from the attack were Naftali Sheetrit, a U.S. citizen and Nadav Eliahu Samuels, a Canadian citizen.

 Terror shooting at Mercaz Harav Kook Yeshiva in Jerusalem

 

Blood covers the floor of the library in the Mercaz Harav yeshiva
(Photo: GPO/Avi Ohayon)
 

The terrorist was identified as Alaa Abu Dhein of the Jabel Mukaber neighborhood in East Jerusalem. His family set up a mourning tent and hung Hamas and Hizbullah flags outside their home – ordered removed by the Israel police.

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Hamas "blesses the Jerusalem operation."

 Terror shooting at Mercaz Harav Kook Yeshiva in Jerusalem

Hamas supporters celebrate in Jabalya camp in the northern Gaza Strip after the terror shooting in Jerusalem (Photo: Reuters)

Gaza’s streets filled with joyous crowds of thousands on Thursday evening following the terror attack at a Jerusalem rabbinical seminary in which eight people were killed. In mosques in Gaza City and northern Gaza, many residents went to perform the prayers of thanksgiving. Armed men fired in the air in celebration and others passed out sweets to passersby.​

Hamas issued a statement saying the group "blesses the (Jerusalem) operation. It will not be the last."

Hamas radio broadcast  Friday a statement, in which the organization claimed responsibility for the attack, saying it was a "jolting response to the violence in Gaza in which more than 120 Palestinians were killed," and calling on all Hamas supporters to "celebrate this victory against the brutal enemy."

Reuters reported that "the Hamas movement announces its full responsibility for the Jerusalem operation."

Palestinian defense sources said that the gunman was acting on instructions from Hamas leaders in Damascus, in coordination with Hizbullah.

GovXParagraph3Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni: "The murderous rampage against students marking a religious event exemplifies all too well the heinous extremism of the fundamentalist foundations Palestinian terrorism is built upon. Israel will never allow terrorism to achieve its goals. Despicable attacks such as this must strengthen the free world’s understanding of the terrorist threat, in the face of which we must stand resolute and without compromise. Israel expects the nations of the world to support it in its battle against the murderers of students, women and children."​

US President George Bush: "I condemn in the strongest possible terms the terrorist attack in Jerusalem that targeted innocent students at the Mercaz Harav Yeshiva. This barbaric and vicious attack on innocent civilians deserves the condemnation of every nation."

US Secy of State Condoleezza Rice: "The United States condemns tonight’s act of terror and depravity. This barbarous act has no place among civilized peoples and shocks the conscience of all peace loving nations. There is no cause that could ever justify this action."

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon issued a condemnation of the "savage attack" and decried the "deliberate killing and injuring of civilians." The Secretary-General said he was deeply concerned at the potential for continued acts of violence and terrorism to undermine the political process.

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• Segev Peniel Avihail, 15, of Neve Daniel
• Neria Cohen, 15, of Jerusalem
• Yonatan Yitzhak Eldar, 16, of Shilo
• Yehonadav Haim Hirschfeld, 18, of Kokhav Hashahar
• Yohai Lifshitz, 17, of Jerusalem
• Doron Meherete, 26, of Ashdod
• Avraham David Moses, 16, of Efrat
• Ro’i Roth, 18, of Elkana​

 Terror shooting at Mercaz Harav Kook Yeshiva in Jerusalem

Segev Peniel Avihail​

 Terror shooting at Mercaz Harav Kook Yeshiva in Jerusalem

Neria Cohen​

 Terror shooting at Mercaz Harav Kook Yeshiva in Jerusalem
Yonatan Yitzhak Eldar​
 Terror shooting at Mercaz Harav Kook Yeshiva in Jerusalem
Yehonadav Haim Hirschfeld​
 Terror shooting at Mercaz Harav Kook Yeshiva in Jerusalem
Yohai Lifshitz​
 Terror shooting at Mercaz Harav Kook Yeshiva in Jerusalem

Doron Meherete​

 Terror shooting at Mercaz Harav Kook Yeshiva in Jerusalem
Avraham David Moses​
 Terror shooting at Mercaz Harav Kook Yeshiva in Jerusalem
Ro’i Roth​​