Palestinians Stone Tour Bus Near Har Hazeisim

YERUSHALAYIM -

An Israeli tour bus was attacked by rock-throwing Palestinians near Har Hazeisim on Monday night, The Jerusalem Post reported.

The bus carrying 54 members of the Ashkelon branch of the Zionist Council on a visit to the holy site prior to Yom Kippur, was pelted without warning.

According to Yossi Cohen, the group’s coordinator, the attack began at approximately 8:15 p.m., when the bus passed Ammunition Hill and turned toward the entrance of Har Hazeisim.

“We heard a boom, and a few seconds later we realized what it was,” Cohen recounted on Tuesday. “People began to scream and panic, and we saw one pane [of glass] just shatter.”

Cohen said a young girl on the bus narrowly escaped injury when the window adjacent to her seat shattered. “It was a miracle she wasn’t injured,” he said.

Once the driver realized what was going on, he sped up until the bus reached a safe area before calling police, who arrived within minutes.

Afterwards, the group decided to continue on to the Kosel for Selichos.

Police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld confirmed the attack Tuesday, stating that it was one of “several stone-throwing incidents” in the area on Monday.

“Police deal with this almost daily in and around different Arab neighborhoods,” Rosenfeld said.

Although the Committee for Protection of the Mount of Olives said Tuesday that such incidents have declined in recent months after police presence was bolstered, it said there is still much to be done to ensure safety.

The organization is demanding that a police station with 24-hour surveillance be established in the area to prevent future attacks.