Some congregants at Mt. Meron say police blocked an exit during severe overcrowding that led to at least 44 deaths.
It wasn’t immediately clear why police may have prevented some people from leaving the scene, which would have lessened pressure on the packed crowd, but officers were apparently unaware of the severity of the situation and trying to keep some areas clear of congregants.
Channel 12 broadcasts footage of tightly packed worshipers arguing with police at some point during the night.
“We were walking out, everything was flowing, suddenly it stopped,” a survivor identified as Zohar tells Channel 12. “Everyone was pressed up against each other and we did not understand why. I lifted up my head and I saw police blocking the entrance, I shouted to them ‘people are dying here.'”
Massive crowding ahead of Mt Meron tragedy; death toll up to 44 pic.twitter.com/ne9OqZnVD1
— Luke Tress (@luketress) April 30, 2021