At least two people have been killed and several others injured in a shooting in a full part of central Tel Aviv, Israeli doctors have said.
The attacker opened fire in a busy bar and restaurant area before fleeing, according to police Thursday night.
Israeli aid agency Magen David Adom said it received reports of a shooting at “various scenes” in downtown Tel Aviv.
Two men about 30 years old were killed, the service said, and six people, three of whom were seriously injured, were taken to the nearby Ichilov hospital.
The hospital confirmed that two people had died and that it had treated eight injured people.
Tel Aviv police chief Amichai Eshed said the shooter opened fire at about 9pm in a full bar and then fled.
He said: “Our job assumption is that he is still nearby.
“There are indications so far that this is a terrorist attack, but I have to be very delicate about this and say we are controlling other leads as well.”
Hamas, the Palestinian militant group that controls the Gaza Strip, praised the attack but claimed no responsibility.
Israeli broadcaster Kan showed live footage of officers flooding the area and training their guns on the top story of a building, as well as an explosion of some sort.
At least one shooting took place on Dizengoff Street, a central thoroughfare and popular weekend hangout.
Police urged people to avoid the area, the scene of several deadly attacks over the years, including the murder of two Israelis in 2016 by an Arab citizen of Israel.
Thursday is the start of the Israeli weekend and the popular nightlife area was full.
Prime Minister Naftali Bennett followed the situation from the Israeli military headquarters, which is also in the center of Tel Aviv, his office said.
Neil Wigan, the UK’s ambassador to Israel, tweeted that it was “devastating to see innocent civilians being brutally targeted again”.
Tensions are high after a series of attacks by Palestinian attackers killed 11 people just before the holy Islamic month of Ramadan, which began almost a week ago.
Last year, protests and clashes during Ramadan sparked an 11-day conflict in Gaza.
Israeli, Jordanian and Palestinian leaders have held several meetings in recent weeks, and Israel has taken a number of steps aimed at calming tensions, including issuing thousands of additional work permits to Palestinians from the Gaza Strip.
Tens of thousands are expected to attend the first weekly prayers of Ramadan at the Al-Aqsa Mosque in East Jerusalem on Friday, after restrictions were lifted.
Israel: Two killed in Tel Aviv after gunman opened fire in full nightlife area | World news
Source link Israel: Two killed in Tel Aviv after gunman opened fire in full nightlife area | World news