- REUTERS/Baz Ratner
Four people were killed and six others wounded after two Palestinian gunmen opened fire in central Tel Aviv, according to media reports citing Israeli police.
Tel Aviv’s police chief confirmed that both shooters have been apprehended and that one of them was wounded, according to a BBC reporter on the ground.
Five of the injured victims are in serious condition, a spokesman at Ichilov Hospital told CNN.
Israeli media outlet Channel 10 reported that the two assailants were cousins, both 21, from the city of Yatta in the Israeli-occupied West Bank.
Police have ended their search for a third suspect.
The assailants had apparently been eating at a restaurant in Sarona Market – an upscale mall in the center of the city and Israel’s largest indoor market – when they started shooting at around 9:30 p.m. local time. The market is close to Israel’s central military headquarters and Defense Ministry compound, according to Reuters.
- Wikimedia Commons
The attackers were dressed as Hasidic Jews, according to CNN.
The shooting is being described as a terrorist attack aimed against Israelis. An eyewitness told The Times of Israel that he saw one of the shooters fire his weapon until he ran out of bullets, then fled the scene.
“Terror will not silence us,” Tel Aviv’s mayor, Ron Huldai, said in a statement. “We will return to work tomorrow.”
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was briefed on the attack upon landing in Israel from his trip to Moscow.
The US State Department released a statement condemning the “horrific terrorist attack.”
“We extend our deepest condolences to the families of those killed and our hopes for a quick recovery for those wounded,” the statement read. “These cowardly attacks against innocent civilians can never be justified. We are in touch with Israeli authorities to express our support and concern.”
Danny Danon, Israel’s ambassador to the UN, called on the UN Security Council to condemn the attack, drawing parallels to other recent terrorist attacks that received global attention.
“Today’s heinous attack sadly proves that when the international community refuses to condemn terror against Israelis, the next attack is only a matter of time,” he said in a statement, according to CNN. “Terror in Tel Aviv must be treated the same as terror in Paris or Istanbul.”
At least 31 Israelis have been killed by Palestinian attackers over the past year, Reuters reported. One hundred ninety-six Palestinians have either been shot dead by Israeli security forces or killed in protests.