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Several killed in Israel shooting attack

March 27, 2022

The "Islamic State" militant group has claimed responsibility for an attack in the northern city of Hadera. Israeli authorities said two were killed and 10 were injured.

Israeli security forces gather at the site of an attack that left two Israeli police dead in the northern city of Hadera
At least two people were killed and four injured in the attackImage: Gil Cohen-Magen/AFP

Gunmen killed two people in the northern Israeli city of Hadera on Sunday, according to medics and police.

The "Islamic State" militant group has claimed responsibility for the attack, releasing videos of the alleged assailants pledging allegiance to the terror group.

Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett headed to the scene of the incident shortly after the news broke, his office said.

What do we know so far? 

The two attackers were also shot, according to Israeli police. Paramedics said that four people were injured, two seriously, in the incident that took place in the coastal town.

Israel's national emergency services have confirmed the deaths of one man and one woman.

The Times of Israel newspaper cited the Magen David Adom ambulance service as saying the victims also included two men in their 20s, who had been left seriously injured, as well as a 45-year-old man and 20-year-old woman.

Israeli Zaka Rescue and Recovery team carry the body of a victim at the scene of shooting attack In Hadera, Israel
The victims were taken to a nearby hospital, where several people were treated for shockImage: Ariel Schalit/AP/picture alliance

In video footage being circulated by Israeli media, two gunmen can be seen opening fire before they themselves are shot.

A police spokesperson said border guards who had been sitting in a nearby restaurant ran to the scene and shot the attackers dead.

Who was behind the attack?

Police referred to the attackers as "terrorists," a term usually limited to Arab perpetrators. The Times of Israel reported that police had said the men were Arab Israelis.

Residents in the Arab Israeli city of Umm al-Fahm, near Hadera, said many police had been deployed there.

Hamas, the ruling Islamic militant group in the Gaza Strip, called the attack a "heroic operation" and a "natural and legitimate response" to Israel's "crimes against our people."

Another Islamist group, Islamic Jihad, said the attack was "an eloquent message from our people against attempts to break our will."

The attack followed another one on Tuesday, in which four people were killed in a knife attack in the southern city of Beersheba.

Israeli security forces gather at the site of an attack that left two Israeli police dead in the northern city of Hadera
The attack came as foreign diplomats gathered in Israel for a regional summitImage: Gil Cohen-Magen/AFP/Getty Images

Attack during diplomatic summit

The latest attack comes as US and Arab diplomats meet in Israel's southern Negev region for an unprecedented regional summit hosted by Israeli Foreign Minister Yair Lapid.

"I briefed the participants of the Negev Summit on the details of the Hadera attack," Lapid said in a statement.

"All the foreign ministers condemned the attack, sent their condolences to the families of the victims and wished a speedy recovery to the wounded."

Blinken condemns 'senseless acts of violence'

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken, taking part in the summit, condemned the attack in a separate message on Twitter.

"Such senseless acts of violence and murder have no place in society. We stand with our Israeli partners and send our condolences to the families of the victims," he said.

An Israeli official told the AFP news agency that the planned events were going ahead and the diplomats were dining together before further meetings on Monday.

ar, ab, kb/wd, jsi (AFP, Reuters, AP, dpa)