President, opposition head send condolences to families of terror attack victims
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President, opposition head send condolences to families of terror attack victims

Rivlin: We will not be broken; Herzog: Attack inspired by Berlin and Nice truck-ramming attacks, we will overcome

An Israeli soldier comforts a comrade near the site of a vehicle-ramming terror attack in Jerusalem, in which four soldiers were killed and 16 injured on January 8, 2017. (AFP PHOTO / MENAHEM KAHANA)
An Israeli soldier comforts a comrade near the site of a vehicle-ramming terror attack in Jerusalem, in which four soldiers were killed and 16 injured on January 8, 2017. (AFP PHOTO / MENAHEM KAHANA)

President Reuven Rivlin and opposition leader Isaac Herzog (Zionist Union) sent messages of condolence to the families of the soldiers killed in Sunday’s truck-ramming attack, and vowed that the country would overcome terror.

As he left for a state visit to Georgia, Rivlin said, “I am departing now on a state visit to Georgia, though my heart remains in Israel, and it is a heavy heart indeed.”

“I and Nechama send our support to the families who have lost those most dear to them, and offer strength to the injured being treated in hospital,” he added. “On my return, I will visit the families.”

“We had not thought for a moment that terror would not once again rear its ugly head, nor will we be broken this time either,” Rivlin vowed, “but will continue to stand tall, and fight against terrorism.”

A composite image of the four Israeli soldiers killed on January 8, 2017 in a truck-ramming terror attack in Jerusalem. From left, IDF Lieutenant Yael Yekutiel, IDF Cadet Shir Hajaj, IDF Cadet Shira Tzur, IDF Cadet Erez Orbach. (Handout photos IDF Spokesperson)
A composite image of the four Israeli soldiers killed on January 8, 2017 in a truck-ramming terror attack in Jerusalem. From left, IDF Lieutenant Yael Yekutiel, IDF Cadet Shir Hajaj, IDF Cadet Shira Tzur, IDF Cadet Erez Orbach. (Handout photos IDF Spokesperson)

“I send my support to the security services, who are working all the time against this threat, and now especially.”

President Reuven Rivlin speaks during an event hosting Israeli ambassadors to European countries, at the President's residence in Jerusalem, January 1, 2017. (Mark Neyman/GPO)
President Reuven Rivlin. (Mark Neyman/GPO)

Herzog said the terror attack in Berlin last month and Nice earlier this year likely inspired Sunday’s terrorist.

“I have no doubt that the truck-ramming attacks that we’ve seen in recent months abroad influenced this vile terrorist’s murder weapon decision,” Herzog said in a Hebrew Facebook video.

Zionist Union leader Isaac Herzog leads a faction meeting in the Knesset on December 26 2016 (Miriam Alster/Flash90)
Zionist Union leader Isaac Herzog. (Miriam Alster/Flash90)

The opposition leader praised the soldiers and the civilian guide who shot the terrorist as he carried out the attack, and sent condolences to the families of the victims.

“Jerusalem is branded by terror attacks. [But] Jerusalem will always overcome the terror,” Herzog said.

Four soldiers were killed in the terror attack, identified as Lieutenant Yael Yekutiel (20) of Givatayim, Cadet Shir Hajaj (22) of Maaleh Adumim, Cadet Shira Tzur (20) from Haifa, and Cadet Erez Orbach (20) from Alon Shvut.

Sixteen others were injured, two of them very seriously, in the attack which occurred as a group of soldiers were getting off a bus at the promenade, a popular tourist spot in southern Jerusalem, when Fadi al-Qunbar drove a large flatbed truck into them.

The driver accelerated as he struck the group. After he hit the soldiers, he put the vehicle into reverse and began to run over them a second time.

The terrorist was shot by soldiers and a civilian tour guide, police said. He died of his wounds.

Israeli police at the scene of a terror attack in Jerusalem Sunday, Jan. 8, 2017. A Palestinian rammed his truck into a group of Israeli soldiers, killing four and wounding 16 others (AP Photo/Mahmoud Illean)
Israeli police at the scene of a terror attack in Jerusalem Sunday, January 8, 2017. A Palestinian rammed his truck into a group of Israeli soldiers, killing four and wounding 16 others (AP Photo/Mahmoud Illean)
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