Netanyahu: Israel will overcome this ‘new kind of terror’

PM hails the ‘lifesaving’ swift response of security and medical personnel in Jerusalem car-ramming attack that wounded 14

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu speaks in a committee meeting at the Knesset on December 8, 2015. (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu speaks in a committee meeting at the Knesset on December 8, 2015. (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)

Israel will not be defeated by a “new kind of terrorism” manifested in the current wave of car-rammings, stabbings and other acts of violence carried out by “individual” attackers, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Monday, hours after 14 civilians were injured in a terror attack at a Jerusalem bus stop.

Speaking at a meeting of his Likud party’s Knesset faction, Netanyahu also praised security and medical forces at the scene for their swift response which he said had saved lives.

“We’re acting to fight this terror and I have no doubt that we will prevail over it,” he said.

A short time earlier, a Palestinian from East Jerusalem plowed his car into Israeli civilians standing at a bus stop at the entrance to Jerusalem, injuring 14 people, three of them moderately. Those in moderate condition include a 15-month-old baby and a woman in her 70s. The baby’s condition was later changed to serious as doctor’s fought to save his foot. His mother was also among those injured.

Police named the terrorist as Abed el-Muhsen Hassuna, a 21-year-old resident of the East Jerusalem neighborhood of Beit Hanina. He was shot dead as he tried to exit the car. A new ax and a new screwdriver were found in the vehicle, indicating that he intended to attack people with those as well.

Hassuna drove his white Mazda sedan onto the sidewalk, smashing into pedestrians at a bus stop, close to the Chords Bridge and near the capital’s central bus station, police said. The car also struck a fire hydrant, sending water shooting into the air.

A member of the security forces, a security guard and an armed civilian who saw the attack taking place shot the attacker before he was able to get out of his car and approach the civilians. The civilian was the first to respond, and shot the driver, Channel 2 said.

Jerusalem has been one of the two focal points of terror attacks since the latest wave of violence began in October, with the West Bank city of Hebron being the other. More than 20 Israelis have been killed since the start of the violence, and hundreds more have been wounded.

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