Monday 20 November 2017

Asylum seeker mistakenly shot and beaten dies

A wounded Israeli policeman is evacuated from the scene of an attack in Beersheba. Photo: AP
A wounded Israeli policeman is evacuated from the scene of an attack in Beersheba. Photo: AP

Inna Lazareva in Tel Aviv

An Eritrean asylum seeker who was shot by Israeli officers and beaten by a mob after being mistaken for a Palestinian gunman has died of his wounds.

The 21-year-old man, who was a bystander in the attack, died of his wounds late on Sunday, a spokesman for Soroka Hospital said.

An Israeli soldier was also killed and several others hurt in the attack carried out by a Palestinian attacker armed with a gun and knife.

Israeli police said officers at the bus station mistakenly opened fire on the Eritrean man during the attack, apparently thinking he was an assailant.

Security camera footage of the incident on Israeli news sites showed an Israeli security guard shooting the man as he crawled on the ground.

Israeli news sites said the man was kicked by bystanders as he lay in a pool of blood.


The attack was carried out by 19-year-old Mouhand al-Okbian, an Israeli bedouin from the southern Negev town of Hura, who arrived at the Beersheba bus station on Sunday evening armed with a gun and knife.

He opened fire on commuters in the station, killing an IDF soldier Sgt. Omri Levy, also 19, and injuring 11 others.

Mr Al-Obkbian had apparently no previous criminal record.

His relative was arrested for aiding him, after he allegedly provided him with the weapons and may have helped him to enter the central bus station.

Mr Al-Okbian's mother is originally from Gaza and moved to the Negev after she married an Israeli man.

The attack was one of the boldest yet in a month-long wave of violence, which has seen eight Israelis and at least 35 Palestinians killed.

The mistaken killing of the Eritrean, recalls a similar event last week when an Israeli Jew stabbed another Israeli Jew near Haifa, after mistaking him for an Arab.

The victim in that case, Uri Rezken suffered moderate wounds and is recovering in hospital.

(© Daily Telegraph London)

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