Four people were murdered and ten were injured when a terrorist attacked a shul in Tunisia during the Lag Ba’Omer celebrations on Tuesday.
Four people were murdered in a terrorist attack outside of a shul in Tunisia during Lag Ba’Omer celebrations Tuesday.
The perpetrator, a security guard in the National Guard naval center, shot his fellow security guard, seized extra ammunition and made his way toward the shul. When he arrived there, he began shooting indiscriminately at the security guards stationed outside and at civilians, killing two Jews who were in the parking lot and a security guard. Five other security guards and four civilians were injured.
The Jewish victims were later identified as Aviel Hadad, 30, H’yd, who lived in Djerba, and his cousin, Ben Hadad, 42, H’yd, a resident of France who was visiting.
According to the Tunisian Interior Ministry, the attacker was killed by security guards seeking to prevent him from entering the shul. In addition to the dead, ten people were wounded in the attack.
The assailant is a guard affiliated with the National Guard naval center in the town of Aghir on Djerba. He first killed a colleague with his service weapon and then seized ammunition and sought to reach the Ghriba synagogue, the ministry said.
When he reached the area, he opened fire on security units stationed at the synagogue, which was locked down so that those inside were kept secure while authorities investigated the motives for the attack, the ministry said.
Several hours later, police forces began evacuating the worshipers from the shul.
Djerba is home to one of the last Jewish communities in the Arab world, and the shul is believed to date back 1500 years. In the past, thousands would flock to the shul for the annual Lag Ba’Omer celebration.