Extra Than 100 Injured in Stampede at Israeli Non secular Pageant

More Than 100 Injured in Stampede at Israeli Religious Festival

(JERUSALEM) — A stampede broke out early Friday at a Jewish non secular gathering attended by tens of hundreds of individuals in northern Israel, injuring greater than 100 individuals, dozens critically, Israel’s most important rescue service stated. Israeli media reported dozens of deaths.

The catastrophe occurred on the most important celebrations of Lag BaOmer, a vacation when tens of hundreds of individuals, principally ultra-Orthodox Jews, collect to honor Rabbi Shimon Bar Yochai, a 2nd century sage and mystic who’s buried there. Giant crowds historically gentle bonfires as a part of the celebrations at Mount Meron.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu known as it a “nice tragedy,” and stated everybody was praying for the victims.

The incident occurred after midnight, and the reason for the stampede was not instantly clear. Movies circulating on social media confirmed massive numbers of ultra-Orthodox Jews packed collectively in tight areas.

A 24-year-old witness, recognized solely by his first title Dvir, advised the Military Radio station that “plenty of individuals had been pushed into the identical nook and a vortex was created.” He stated a primary row of individuals fell down, after which a second row, the place he was standing, additionally started to fall down from the stress of the stampede.

“I felt like I used to be about to die,” he stated.

The Magen David Adom rescue service tweeted that it was treating 103 individuals, together with 38 in essential situation. Israeli media had earlier reported {that a} grandstand collapsed, however the rescue service stated all of the accidents occurred in a stampede.

Israeli media, citing nameless medical officers reported as much as 40 individuals had been killed, however the rescue service didn’t instantly reply to a request for affirmation. Images from the scene confirmed rows of wrapped our bodies.

The Israeli navy stated it had dispatched medics and search and rescue groups together with helicopters to help with a “mass casualty incident” within the space. It didn’t present particulars on the character of the catastrophe.

It was the primary big non secular gathering to be held legally since Israel lifted almost all restrictions associated to the coronavirus pandemic. The nation has seen circumstances plummet since launching one of many world’s most profitable vaccination campaigns late final yr.

Well being authorities had nonetheless warned towards holding such a big gathering.

However when the celebrations began, the Public Safety Minister Amir Ohana, police chief Yaakov Shabtai and different prime officers visited the occasion and met with police, who had deployed 5,000 additional forces to keep up order.

Ohana, a detailed ally of Netanyahu, thanked police for his or her arduous work and dedication “for shielding the well-being and safety for the numerous members” as he wished the nation a cheerful vacation.

Netanyahu is struggling to kind a governing coalition forward of a Tuesday deadline, and the nationwide tragedy is certain to complicate these efforts.