Givat Zeev (Palestinian Territories) (AFP)
Two people were killed and dozens injured on Sunday when rostrum seats collapsed at a synagogue in the Israeli settlement of Givat Zeev in the occupied West Bank, Israeli authorities said.
The incident took place outside Jerusalem “as hundreds of people gathered” for the Jewish holiday of Shavuot, an emergency services spokesperson for Magen David Adom told Israeli channel Kan .
The structure was “under construction,” he said.
Magen David Adom reported in a statement “the death of two injured, including a 40-year-old man and a 12-year-old boy.”
He said “167 people were evacuated to hospitals, including five seriously injured.”
Images circulating on social media showed the stands collapsing as dozens of men prayed.
“It was forbidden to pray in this building,” Jerusalem police commander Doron Tourgeman told the site.
“My heart goes out to the victims of the Givat Zeev disaster,” Defense Minister Benny Gantz wrote on Twitter, adding that the armed forces were seeking to help with the evacuation.
The incident comes just weeks after a stampede that killed 45 people at a Jewish pilgrimage site.
The fatal crash in late April at Mount Meron in northern Israel has been described as one of the worst peacetime disasters since the country’s founding in 1948.
At least 16 children and adolescents were among those killed.
The comptroller of the State of Israel announced earlier this month the launch of an investigation into the stampede.
© 2021 AFP