Southern Israel man moderately hurt in suspected car-ramming attack

Police confirm run-over deliberate, not yet able to determine whether background nationalist or criminal; victim, a military boarding school student, was wearing uniforms

Ilana Curiel|
An Israeli man was moderately injured Thursday morning after he was hit by a car in the southern city of Beer Sheva, in what law enforcement suspect is a terrorist attack.
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The 18-year-old is a student at a military boarding school in the city and was wearing a uniform at the time he was hit.
Footage from incident
The police said they are investigating whether the incident was fueled by nationalist sentiment or inspired by a deadly bomb attack in Jerusalem Wednesday.
Footage from the event shows the vehicle jumping a curb, speeding toward the man and throwing him into the air.
The police said that the vehicle continued driving after hitting the man until it stopped shortly after.
3 View gallery
תאונת דרכים בין רכב להולך רגל בבאר שבע
תאונת דרכים בין רכב להולך רגל בבאר שבע
EMTs administer first aid to Israeli man ran over by car in Beer Sheva
(Photo: Hatzalah Beer Sheva)
The driver, a 39-year-old resident of the Bedouin city of Rahat, was taken for medical treatment and arrested after he was discharged. The suspect, a truck driver by profession, had no criminal record.
Negev District Police Station chief Assistant Commissioner Nachshon Nagler confirmed to Ynet that a preliminary investigation showed that the run-over was deliberate, but could not yet determine with certainty the background was either nationalist or criminal.
"At this stage, we're not ruling out any direction. Police officers who were in the area as part of the increased security preparedness noticed the event and gave the young man medical treatment," he said.
3 View gallery
תאונת דרכים בין רכב להולך רגל בבאר שבע
תאונת דרכים בין רכב להולך רגל בבאר שבע
Police at the scene
(Photo: Roee Idan)
"There is a very large deployment of the police throughout the country and in the Negev as well. We ask the public to be vigilant."
Israeli security forces and law enforcement were on high alert throughout the country, fearing copycat attacks inspired by the deadly twin bombings in Jerusalem, which killed one Israeli teen.
Liat Meir, an eyewitness, said that the driver had tried to flee the scene before he was arrested.
"I was working from home when I heard a bang. I looked outside and saw the student dragging himself to safety," she told Ynet.
"I heard one driver screaming and I thought she hit him at first. The hitting driver kept on driving and the cops arrested him after that. He tried to flee.
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