Evacuating the injured from Mount Meron
Evacuating the injured from Mount Meron
Photo: Elad Gershgoren
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu visits the scene of the tragedy on Mount Meron on Friday morning

PM booed at scene of Meron tragedy, calls for day of mourning

Bottles hurled at Netanyahu at site of stampede at Lag BaOmer event that claimed at least 45 lives; police minister says independent probe needed into all aspects of event planning; Jerusalem lowers flags to half mast as hundreds give blood

Ynet |
Published: 04.30.21 , 12:39
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was booed Friday morning as he visited the site of the deadly crush at a Lag BaOmer event in northern Israel that left at least 45 people dead and dozens more injured.
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  • Bottles were also thrown at the prime minister as visited the scene of the disaster at Mount Meron, which occurred when a stampede at the event staged by the insular Toldos Aharon Hassidic sect.
    5 צפייה בגלריה
    נתניהו ואוחנה בהר מירון
    נתניהו ואוחנה בהר מירון
    Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu visits the scene of the tragedy on Mount Meron on Friday morning
    (Photo: Gil Hechushtan)
    Netanyahu called for Sunday to be a "national day of mourning" for the victims.
    Writing on Twitter as news of the tragedy broke overnight Thursday, the prime minister said: “A terrible disaster on Mount Meron. We all pray for the healing of the injured. I want to strengthen the rescue forces operating in the area.”
    Health Minister Yuli Edelstein visited some of the injured at Ziv Medical Center in Safed on Friday morning.
    5 צפייה בגלריה
    יולי אדלשטיין מבקר פצועים בזיו
    יולי אדלשטיין מבקר פצועים בזיו
    Health Minister Yuli Edelstein visiting a man injured in the Meron disaster at Ziv Medical Center in Safed
    (Photo: Avihu Shapira)
    Edelstein said Friday morning that almost all of the victims had now been identified and urged people not to rush to place blame for the disaster.
    "Now is not the time," the health minister said.
    But former Ashkenazi chief rabbi Yisrael Meir Lau on Friday morning called for an commission of inquiry into the events that led to the disaster.
    "We are versed commissions of inquiry, and we have no option but to launch one here - today or Sunday at the latest," Lau said.
    5 צפייה בגלריה
    Rescue workers from the United Hatzalah volunteer service trying to treat the injured during the Meron disaster
    Rescue workers from the United Hatzalah volunteer service trying to treat the injured during the Meron disaster
    Rescue workers from the United Hatzalah volunteer service trying to treat the injured during the Meron disaster
    (Photo: United Hatzalah)
    Attorney General Avichai Mandelblit on Friday morning ordered an investigation into the Israel Police that will focus on their handling of the chain of events that led to the tragedy.
    In Jerusalem, President Reuven Rivlin lit 45 candles at his official residence in honor of the victims.
    “This is a terrible, painful day," the president said in a statement Friday.
    "A heartbreaking tragedy. Our prayers and thoughts are with those injured and with the families of those killed and missing in the awful tragedy at Mount Meron last night.
    "I send my heartfelt thanks to those working without a break since last night to rescue and give medical treatment. This is the time to embrace the families to help all those looking for their loved ones to take those injured to our hearts. To weep together.”
    Also in Jerusalem, Mayor Moshe Lion ordered the flags of the state and the city to fly at half mast as hundreds queued at the city's Magen David Adom center to give blood.
    5 צפייה בגלריה
    תרומות דם אסון הר מירון בניין מד"א ירושלים
    תרומות דם אסון הר מירון בניין מד"א ירושלים
    Israelis donating blood in Jerusalem in the wake of the Meron disaster
    (Photo: TPS)
    "This is a national disaster, the worst in the State of Israel," Lion said in a statement Friday morning.
    "The city of Jerusalem is lowering its flags to half mast and opening an operations room for the families that will handle every request. I am praying for the wellbeing of the injured and mourn with the bereaved families."
    Public Security Minister Amir Ohana, how accompanied Netanyahu at the site on Friday, also said an independent investigation was needed into all aspects of the planning and execution of the tragic event.
    5 צפייה בגלריה
    משפחות מחפשות מידע על יקיריהן באבו כביר
    משפחות מחפשות מידע על יקיריהן באבו כביר
    Security forces outside the Abu Kabir forensics institute in Tel Aviv on Friday morning
    (Photo: Moti Kimchi)
    Social workers who speak Yiddish, which is a common language among the more conservative ultra-Orthodox communities, were dispatched to the Abu Kabir forensics institute in Tel Aviv where the bodies of the victims were being identified.
    Relatives of the missing rushed to the institute to look for loved ones, as Tel Aviv police closed the surrounding roads and a special area was prepared for the concerned family members.
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