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Eilat Shooter Came to Israel with 'Masa Israel' Program

Jewish Agency head Sharansky appoints committee to check how the man was accepted to the program.
By Gil Ronen
First Publish: 10/5/2012, 3:39 PM

Natan Sharansky
Natan Sharansky
Flash 90

The young man who was shot and killed in Eilat Friday after he murdered another man came to Israel on the Masa Israel program. Jewish Agency Chairman Natan Sharansky announced that he has appointed a committee to look into the process by which the killer was accepted to the program.

The committee will presumably check if there were any warning signs regarding the man's character or mental health that were ignored, and whether screening of candidates needs to be improved.

Sharansky expressed deep regret for the loss of life and said that the event was an anomalous one.

The shooter was an American Jew. He was in Eilat as a participant in the Oranim program, one of about 200 supported by Masa Israel, which is a joint project of the Israeli government and the Jewish Agency.

Every year, the Masa Israel project brings about 10,000 young Jews from around the world to study and volunteer. The project aims to strengthen ties between Israel and the Jewish world. Upon their return to their countries, many participants assume key positions in their communities and advocate for Israel. In recent years, many Masa Israel participants have made aliyah.