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US condemns ‘abhorrent’ terror attack in Beersheba: ‘This has to stop’

Washington calls killing of four Israelis ‘despicable,’ offers condolences; UN envoy to Mideast says ‘no justification’ for violence, and ‘no excuse for praising such acts’

The scene of a car ramming and stabbing attack in Beersheba, March 22, 2022. (Flash90)
The scene of a car ramming and stabbing attack in Beersheba, March 22, 2022. (Flash90)

The US condemned the terror attack by an Arab Israeli knifeman on Tuesday that killed four Israelis and wounded several others in the southern city of Beersheba.

“The United States strongly condemns the abhorrent terrorist attack today in Beersheba, Israel, which killed four people and injured others,” State Department Ned Price said.

“We offer our deepest condolences to the victims and their families and our prayers for full recovery are with the wounded. We stand ready to provide support to the Israeli government’s efforts to investigate this heinous crime,” he said.

Washington’s ambassador to Israel, Tom Nides, said, “Despicable terrorist attack today in Be’er Sheva. This has to stop! My heart goes out to the victims and their families.”

The US National Security Council said in a statement, “We strongly condemn the heinous terrorist attack in Israel today that killed four Israelis and injured several others.”

“Our deepest condolences go out to the families of the victims. May their memories be a blessing. We stand together with Israel in the fight against terror,” the statement said.

The UK’s foreign secretary, Liz Truss, said she was “appalled by the terror attack.”

“The UK stands in solidarity with the people of Israel and my thoughts are with the victims and their families,” she said.

The UK Ambassador to Israel Neil Wigan said he was “devastated” by the attack.

“Such violence against civilians is contemptible,” he said.

Tor Wennesland, the UN special coordinator for the Middle East peace process, said he “strongly condemns the killing of four Israeli civilians.”

“There is no justification for violence or terrorism. There is nothing heroic in the killing of civilians and there is no excuse for praising such acts. It must be condemned by all.”

US Senator Ted Cruz called the attack “Pure evil from a terrorist ISIS supporter.”

“America stands with Israel against these atrocities,” he said.

The four victims of the attack have been named as Doris Yahbas, 49, a mother of three, Laura Yitzhak, 43, also a mother of three, Rabbi Moshe Kravitzky, 48, a father of four, and Menahem Yehezkel, 67, a brother to four.

The four victims of a terror attack in Beersheba on March 22, 2022: Laura Yitzhak, top left; Rabbi Moshe Kravitzky, top right; Doris Yahbas, bottom left; Menahem Yehezkel, bottom right. (Social media/courtesy)

Palestinian media identified the attacker as 34-year-old Mohammad Ghaleb Abu al-Qi’an, a terror convict from the Bedouin town of Hura in the Negev.

Abu al-Qi’an had served four years in prison for plotting to join the fundamentalist Islamic State terror group in Syria. He was released in 2019. Police said he likely acted alone in Tuesday’s attack.

He stabbed three of the victims to death, and ran another over with his vehicle.

He was then confronted by an armed bus driver, who attempted to get him to lower his knife, footage from the scene showed. The attacker lunged at the driver, who shot him alongside a second armed Israeli civilian. First responders reported that the stabber died from the gunshot wounds.

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