Latest update: October 6th, 2012
Second update from Benjamin Rutland, Spokesperson to the Foreign and English Language Media, The Jewish Agency for Israel::
In response to the tragic incident in Eilat, the Chairperson of the Jewish Agency, Natan Sharansky expressed his deep sorrow at the loss of life and has appointed a panel to examine the processes by which the American participant was accepted to the Oranim program in Eilat.
The Oranim program is one of 200 long term programs which are funded by Masa Israel, a joint project of the government of Israel and the Jewish Agency for Israel.
Since 2003, over 70,000 young Jews from around the world have participated in Masa programs, which include volunteer work, study and internships.
Update from Benjamin Rutland, Spokesperson to the Foreign and English Language Media, The Jewish Agency for Israel:
The shooter in the incident which took place in Eilat today was a 23 year old from New York. He arrived in Israel two months ago and was participating in a program in Israel which is supported by the Jewish Agency. The program’s staff is in contact with the Israel Police.
A tourist in the southern Israeli city of Eilat on Friday morning overcame a Leonardo hotel security officer, grabbed his weapon and fired at another hotel employee and killed him. The armed man then holed up (according to a report, with several hostages) inside the hotel and refused to talk to police.
According to police, the shooter was drunk. According to a report in Walla, the shooter was fired from his job at the hotel kitchen a few days ago.
Police and IDF forces that arrived quickly at the scene began searching for the shooter’s exact location, and an anti-terror unit confronted the man and killed him (with no injury to the hostages, if there were any).
The entire incident lasted one hour.
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