Golani Brigade recruits resumed their inauguration trek toward the Western Wall in Jerusalem on Thursday morning, just hours after 12 of their comrades were injured in a ramming attack near the old train station in the city.
Israeli security forces on Thursday morning located the vehicle used in a car-ramming attack that injured a group of soldiers in Jerusalem earlier in the day, though the manhunt for the driver continued, officials said.
In the predawn hours of Thursday morning, an as-yet-unidentified assailant rammed his car into a group of Golani Brigade soldiers standing on Jerusalem’s David Remez Street outside the First Station, a popular entertainment hub in the capital. The troops were visiting Jerusalem ahead of an early morning swearing-in ceremony at the Western Wall.
Twelve soldiers were injured in the attack, one of them seriously and the rest lightly, medics said. In the hours following the ramming, nine of them were released from the hospital. The severely wounded serviceman sustained injuries throughout this body and underwent surgery, according to officials from Jerusalem’s Shaare Zedek Medical Center, where he was taken.
“The injured [soldier] continued to be in serious but stable condition. He is unconscious and connected to a respirator in the intensive care unit,” hospital officials said.
The car, which had Israeli license plates, was located in the Palestinian village of Beit Jala, outside of Bethlehem, south of the capital. Small-scale clashes broke out in the village and the surrounding area as Israeli troops searched for the driver, who had fled the scene after hitting the soldiers.
Palestinian media reported that Israeli troops seized security cameras around Bethlehem, apparently as part of the search effort.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Israeli forces would soon capture the driver.
“It is only a matter of time — and not much time — until we get our hands on the assailant,” Netanyahu said in a statement.
Later on Thursday, a Border Police officer was lightly wounded when a terrorist opened fire at him near the Temple Mount in the Old City of Jerusalem. Other officers at the scene returned fire, killing the assailant, police said.
On Thursday morning, following the ramming attack, the Golani Brigade held its swearing-in ceremony at the Western Wall.
“A terrorist tried to damage the spirit of Israel and the spirit of the IDF, but we will continue with out tradition and not let it break our spirit,” said Lt. Col. Sivan Bloch of the Golani Brigade said at the ceremony.
According to IDF Spokesperson Hidai Zilberman, an initial investigation into the attack found that the soldiers were standing on the sidewalk next to the station when the car rammed them suddenly at high speed.
The vehicle then quickly reversed and fled the scene. It did not appear that the soldiers were able to shoot at the driver during or after the attack, Zilberman said.
“This happened in seconds. We understand that some soldiers tried to put magazines into their guns and tried to go after the car, but this happened quickly,” he told reporters.
The Hamas terror group on Thursday lauded the attack in a statement, saying it was a response to Trump’s plan.
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