An Orthodox Jew who stabbed marchers at a Jerusalem gay pride parade 10 years ago launched another knife attack at the same type of parade in the same city Thursday, stabbing and wounding six people who were on the streets for the event, police said.
Video aired on Israel’s Channel 10 shows what appears to be part of the attack at Thursday’s gay pride parade in Jerusalem: a man making quick slashing motions at people on a Jerusalem street, including one holding a rainbow flag, while others try to subdue him.
Of the six people stabbed Thursday, two were injured seriously, Israeli police spokeswoman Luba Samri said.
Police arrested Yishai Shlissel, Samri said.
Israeli police say Shlissel, an Orthodox Jew, was released from prison three weeks ago after serving a 10-year prison sentence for stabbing and wounding three marchers at a Jerusalem gay pride parade in 2005.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Thursday that the government would “pursue justice for those responsible” for the latest attack. The government fell short of calling it an act of terror, but Netanyahu, did call it, “a despicable hate crime.”
“In the state of Israel, the freedom of choice of an individual is one of the most basic values,” the Prime Minister said. “We must ensure that in Israel every man and woman lives confidently in any way they (choose).
“This is how we operate and this is how we will continue to operate. I wish a speedy recovery to the injured.”
In the Channel 10 video, the apparent assailant is shown on the ground, with two men, including someone who appears to be a police officer, holding him still.
Channel 10 also showed video of several wounded people, including a woman — her shirt bloody — who was put onto a stretcher and into an ambulance. Another woman was shown bleeding from her arm as someone applied pressure to the wound.
“We came together today for a festive event, but the joy was shattered when a terrible hate crime occurred here in Jerusalem, the capital of Israel,” Israeli President Reuven Rivlin said about the incident.
“People celebrating their freedom and expressing their identity were viciously stabbed. We must not be deluded, a lack of tolerance will lead us to disaster. We cannot allow such crimes, and we must condemn those who commit and support them.”