Bethlehem man, 70, lightly hurt; guard hit by friendly fire as girls attack passersby with scissors near busy market; security forces shoot both assailants, killing one
(SOURCE) Two Arab female teens identified as attackers were shot after slashing at people near the busy outdoor market with scissors, according to police.
One victim was identified as a 70-year-old Palestinian resident of Bethlehem with stab wounds to his upper body.
A second person, a 27-year-old guard, was lightly hurt by shrapnel from gunfire against the attackers, police said.
They were taken to a local hospital for treatment.
Police identified the two attackers as 14 and 16 years old, from northern Jerusalem. The teenage girls were related to one another, police said.
The 16-year-old died at the scene and the 14-year-old was detained, a police spokesperson said. She was taken to an Israeli hospital in critical condition, according to news reports.
The two cousins were later named as Hadil and Nurhan Awad. Hadil Awad was the sister of Mahmoud Awad, who died in November 2013 at the age of 24. He had been shot in the back of his neck with a rubber bullet by an IDF soldier eight months earlier during a protest near the Qalandiya checkpoint.
Several attackers have been identified as Palestinian teens and adolescents. On Sunday, ministers okayed a move to allow assailants under 14 years of age to be charged.
The busy outdoor market where the attack took place is near Jerusalem’s downtown, which is usually filled with shoppers, vendors and others during the day.
A security camera video released after the incident shows the two attackers jumping up and down and threatening people before they are both shot by a guard.
A witness, Akram Ezyy, said the attackers looked like were “about 12.” He said they were chasing after two old women with scissors when they were shot.
Police spokeswoman Luba Samri said in a statement the police officer ordered the girls to halt their attack, and shot them when they came toward him. The statement did not say how close the girls got to the officer.
The city’s light rail, which runs along Jaffa Street where the attack took place, was briefly shut down in the area, according to the Ynet news site.
The attack is the first stabbing in Jerusalem in nearly two weeks, after the capital seemed to calm following a month-long spate of nearly daily terror attacks.
Attacks in the West Bank and elsewhere have persisted for over two months. On Sunday, an Israeli woman was stabbed to death at the Etzion Junction in the West Bank south of Jerusalem. Two earlier stabbing attacks in the West Bank on Sunday were foiled.
On Saturday night, four people were hurt in a stabbing attack in the southern Israeli city of Kiryat Gat. Two days earlier, three people, including an American national, a Palestinian and an Israeli man, were killed in a shooting and vehicular assault at the Etzion Junction, and two more were killed in a stabbing attack at an office building in Tel Aviv.
Agencies contributed to this report