Israel has been rocked once again by the devastating news that a Palestinian terrorist carried out a murderous attack on Israeli civilians at a bus stop.
The attack occurred on Friday afternoon in Jerusalem’s Ramot neighbourhood when a 35-year-old Palestinian terrorist intentionally ploughed his car at high speed into Israeli families waiting to catch a bus.
Those killed were 6-year-old Yaakov Yisrael Fali, whose brother and father were injured in the attack, and 20-year-old Alter Shlomo Lederman (pictured below), who was at the bus stop with his wife on their way to his parent’s house for Shabbat.
Yaakov Yisrael Fali was quickly buried Friday afternoon before the start of Shabbat, in accordance with Jewish law. His 8-year-old brother is currently in critical condition at the time of writing this article.
The other victims included two men in their 20s in serious condition, a man in his 40s (Fali’s father) is in moderate condition, and a 10-year-old boy in light condition, medical officials said.
The victims were taken to the Shaare Zedek and Hadassah Mount Scopus hospitals in the capital.
“When we arrived at the scene, the sight was shocking,” said MDA medic Shraga Rosenthal. “We saw a car near the bus station after it hit pedestrians who were waiting at the station.”
“We saw six victims lying next to each other, among them, two were children… who were unconscious with severe multisystem trauma,” he said.
The terrorist, identified as Hussein Khaled Qaraqe, was shot dead at the scene of the attack. He is being praised as a ‘martyr’ by Palestinians.
الشهيد حسين خالد قراقع منفذ عملية الدهس في مدينة القدس والتي اسفرت عن مقتل مستوطنين اثنين واصابة 6 اخرين بجراح مختلفة. pic.twitter.com/3wPqhsuqmh
— Hisham Abu Shaqrah | هشام أبو شقرة (@HShaqrah) February 10, 2023
International condemnation of the attack
The attack has been condemned by Israeli leaders and leaders from around the world.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s office said the premier was being updated on the attack and had decided to seal the home of the attacker.
“On behalf of all the citizens of Israel, I send my condolences to the families of those murdered in the attack in Jerusalem. I conducted a security assessment and ordered an increase in forces, to carry out arrests and act immediately to seal the terrorist’s house and demolish it,” Netanyahu said.
Israel’s President Isaac Herzog noted the attack came just before Shabbat, the Jewish day of rest.
“Just before Shabbat and our hearts ache with terrible pain after a despicable terrorist took the lives of a small child and a young man in a ramming attack in Jerusalem,” Herzog said.
“Together with all the people of Israel, I feel the pain of the families and pray for the healing of the wounded,” he said.
The UK’s Middle East Minister James Cleverly condemned the “appalling terror attack”, saying: “We condemn this abhorrent violence, particularly against children. My thoughts are with the families of the victims and those injured.”
Appalling terror attack near Jerusalem today.
We condemn this abhorrent violence, particularly against children.
My thoughts are with the families of the victims and those injured.
— James Cleverly🇬🇧 (@JamesCleverly) February 10, 2023
The UK’s Ambassador to Israel Neil Wigan said he was “horrified” by the incident.
“Attacking innocent people, including children, is inexcusable. The UK completely condemns such violence,” the Ambassador said.
US Ambassador Tom Nides added, “Incredibly sorrowful news that a vicious terrorist attack has killed a small boy and a young man in Jerusalem today. I want to express my deepest condolences to the families of the victims and pray for a speedy recovery for the wounded.”
Palestinians praise the murder of an Israeli child
The usual response to terrorism from the Palestinians is shamefully one of elation. This was highlighted today in stark fashion when they celebrated the killing of a 6-year-old boy.
Hamas shamefully praised the attack as a “heroic response to the crimes of the occupation.”
Videos on social media were shared showing Palestinians in Gaza and the West Bank celebrating the murder and injury of children.
One video showed a Palestinian man filming himself as he orders two children to hand out sweet treats to passers-by. During the video, he is praising Allah for the murder of Jews, highlighting the religious extremism at work when it comes to attacks against Israelis.
A vehicle ramming #Palestinian terror attack in Jerusalem a few hours ago.
A 6 years old child and a 20 years old man were murdered. 6 more are severely injured.
Watch the Palestinian response when they heard the news- sending kids to hand sweets.#palestinianterror #Israel pic.twitter.com/y8ISX4LQTI
— The Israeli truth (@Israelrealtruth) February 10, 2023
Another particularly harrowing video shows Palestinian youth, some of whom are similar ages to the victims, celebrating with joy the murder of Jewish children.
Brainwashed Palestinians celebrate the murder of an Israeli 6 year old child.
The Palestinians reach the depth of depravity. pic.twitter.com/rb0H4LERb9
— Israel ישראל (@Israel) February 10, 2023
Israelis instead of embracing hate, instead went to the site of the attack to pray and show defiance against terror.
— i24NEWS English (@i24NEWS_EN) February 10, 2023
We are often told that the “cycle of violence” will end when Israel stops defending itself. The reality is that Palestinian incitement, particularly of their youth, which is wrapped up in religious extremism, is the real driving force for the conflict.
As Christians who love Israel, we continue to pray for the Jewish people. That they will be able to live peacefully in the land that God gave them. And this Shabbat, we must pray for the victims who are injured and for the families of those who have lost loved ones.
This is an extremely tragic story that highlights the hatred of Israel’s neighbours at a time when Israelis are saving lives in Turkey and sending aid to help their neighbours.
This year, we want to do more to bless Israel and the Jewish people.
We know that as we bless Israel this year, God will bless us, just as He promised in Genesis 12:3, “I will bless those who bless you, and whoever curses you I will curse; and all peoples on earth will be blessed through you.” Now is the time to bless Israel and the Jewish people.