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      Tel Aviv Bus Attack Heroes Feted for Saving Lives

      Security staff from the Ministry of Justice in Tel Aviv received awards Sunday for saving lives, and capturing a terrorist.
      By David Lev
      First Publish: 12/3/2012, 12:15 AM

      Recipients of the awards
      Recipients of the awards
      Justice Ministry

      The terror attack in central Tel Aviv that occurred several weeks ago in the midst of Operation Pillar of Defense, in which an Arab threw a firebomb in the window of a bus, took place just a few meters away from some of Tel Aviv's most important government buildings – courts, the Justice Ministry, and other institutions. In a sense, say police it was fortunate that the terrorist chose Weizmann Street as the site of his attack, because the area has a large number of security officials and police.

      Within seconds of the attack, many of those security officials, including a large number who work at the Justice Ministry, were on the scene, helping to remove victims from the burning bus, keeping order, and helping to put the fire out. Although several people were badly injured in the attack, no one was killed – and at least part of that was due to the quick thinking and action of the security personnel.

      So, in order to express appreciation for their efforts, Justice Minister Ya'akov Ne'eman on Sunday presided over the distribution of certificates to the security staff who helped out during the attack. Not only did the security staff protect the crowd and help to put the fire out, said Ne'eman; the information that eventually led to the capture of the terrorist came from the security staff, who kept a cool head during the crisis, and provided key information to police that helped them track down the terrorist.

      Speaking during the ceremony, Ne'eman told the staff that “your dedication is very praiseworthy. Our Sages said that anyone who saves the life of a Jew saves the whole world, and you fulfilled that tenet several times over. I thank you in the name of the government of Israel for the blessed life-saving work you did,” Ne'eman said.