‘Dozens of dead’ in Israel pilgrimage stampede: rescue services
Accident occurred as tens of thousands of mainly ultra-Orthodox Jews were participating in a religious pilgrimage.
Dozens of people have been killed in a stampede at a Jewish pilgrimage site in the north of Israel, rescue services said.
Magen David Adom, the Israeli emergency service, said that at least 38 people were killed during the event on Friday night, adding “MDA is fighting for the lives of dozens wounded, and will not give up until the last victim is evacuated.”
On social media, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called it a “heavy disaster” and added: “We are all praying for the wellbeing of the casualties.”
The stampede occurred as tens of thousands of mainly ultra-Orthodox Jews were participating in an annual pilgrimage for the feast of Lag BaOmer, in Meron, around the reputed tomb of Rabbi Shimon Bar Yochai, a second-century Talmudic sage.
A video posted on social media by Israel’s public broadcasting, Kan, showed a jampacked crowd of pilgrims walking in a narrow lane.