About Us: The Institute for Study Abroad, Butler University
Incidents in Israel

March 8, 2016  

There have been a series of security incidents in Israel over the past 24 hours. The IFSA-Butler Student Services Manager in Israel, Monica Wasserbach, has checked in with everyone on the program. All of our students are accounted for and fine.  

Following is a brief summary of today’s unfortunate events:

  • A man stabbed 10 people in Jaffo/Tel Aviv, and one American tourist was killed in the incident. The attacker was shot dead by police.
  • In Petah Tikva, a western suburb of Tel Aviv, a man was stabbed and wounded by an unknown attacker.
  • In Jerusalem, a man on a motorcycle opened fire on policemen patrolling Damascus Gate in the Old City. The attacker was also shot dead by police.
  • Three women were arrested earlier this morning for carrying knives and planning stabbing attacks in Jerusalem and at the Abu Dis checkpoint. All three women were apprehended. 

We have been closely monitoring security events in Israel. As you may see from the news recently, there have been an uptick in stabbings and attempted attacks over the past month, as well as attacks and raids in the West Bank. At this time, we are going to keep a close eye on the events in Israel and adjust any programming if necessary.  

We spend considerable time talking about safety and security with students during the program orientation as well as throughout the semester. The Muslim Quarter of the Old City, which includes the Damascus Gate, has been off-limits for our students since the beginning of the semester until further notice. Additionally, students have been reminded to submit any travel plans to Monica should they leave Jerusalem overnight, including weekend trips to Tel Aviv. We do not allow travel to the West Bank or the Gaza Strip under any circumstances.  

While it may be unsettling to hear such news while your student is abroad, please know that we keep close watch on all students and make sure they are aware of their surroundings and environment. Monica and the RIS staff at Hebrew University do a fantastic job of checking in with the students and providing any information and support that is needed.

If you would like more information about the events from today, please see the following media outlets:  

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-35758143
http://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/News.aspx/209095#.Vt8nROb5_ow
http://www.haaretz.com/israel-news/1.707665

Please contact Eryn Espín-Kudzinski, Director of Health, Safety and Security with any questions or concerns.

 
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