MERON: Dozens of people died in a stampede in a jew pilgrimage site in the north of Israel on Friday, rescue services said.
Magen David Adom, the Israeli emergency service, posted the updated toll on Twitter, adding “MDA he is fighting for the lives of dozens of injured and will not surrender until the last victim is evacuated. ”
The stampede came as tens of thousands of Jews, mostly ultra-Orthodox, participated in an annual pilgrimage for the Lag BaOmer festival in Meron, around the supposed grave of Rabbi Shimon Bar Yochai, a second-century Talmudic sage.
The emergency services deployed six helicopters to evacuate the wounded.
Israeli media published an image of a row of bodies covered in plastic bags on the ground.
Authorities had authorized 10,000 people to gather at the grave site, but organizers said more than 650 buses had been chartered from across the country, taking 30,000 pilgrims to Meron.
Around 5,000 police officers had been deployed to secure the event, the largest public gathering in the country during the coronavirus pandemic.