JERUSALEM – The Islamist group Hamas has praised an attack on civilians in Tel Aviv Wednesday night in which four Israelis were killed.
The two shooters, identified as Palestinians, opened fire at the Sarona Market — a popular food and shopping complex near the Israeli Defense Ministry– shattering what was a serene night with chaos and bloodshed.
“People were having coffee,” Amir Ohana, a member of the Israeli Parliament who was at the market, told CNN. “I saw a birthday cake on one of the tables. And then you see the chairs upside down and glass shattered and blood all over.”
Two (so called) terrorists were captured, Israeli police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld said, with one shot and the second arrested at the upscale Sarona Market.
Hamas didn’t claim responsibility for the attack, but said it was the “first of many surprises” planned against Israeli forces during the month of Ramadan.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called “a savage crime, murder in the heart of Tel Aviv.”
“We will take the necessary steps to attack the attackers and defend those who need to be defended,” he said.
Surveillance footage from a cafe near the shooting scene showed chaos as panicked customers knocked over chairs and tables as they rushed to escape. People crawled across the floor and others carried children in their arms.
The four fatalities were Israeli, Rosenfeld said. At least five other people were wounded in the carnage, said Dr. Gil Fire, deputy director of Ichilov Hospital.
An injured suspect also was treated.
Information about a motive wasn’t immediately available. No intelligence suggested an attack was imminent, Rosenfeld said. – CNN