Herzog: I'm Expressing Heartfelt Shock as a Jew

Opposition leader attends lunch with Bnai Torah congregants after synagogue attack, expresses his "heartfelt shock as a Jew."

Hezki Baruch, Cynthia Blank ,

Opposition leader MK Yitzhak Herzog
Opposition leader MK Yitzhak Herzog
Miriam Alster/Flash 90

Opposition Leader, MK Yitzhak Herzog (Labor) came to lunch at Congregation Bnai Torah Synagogue in Har Nof in Jerusalem - the site of Tuesday's bloody terror attack. 

"I come here as a citizen and as a leader to express heartfelt shock as a Jew. The picture of a bullet in the Ark is difficult and heartbreaking. We have come to identify ourselves, to cry and to comfort," Herzog said, adding, "I appreciate the restraint of the hareidi community who continue to study Torah."

In response to Arutz Sheva's question if as opposition chairman, he will support the government at this time, Herzog replied, "in the struggle against terrorism we will always give the government back-up; I would expect the same if the situation were reversed."

"But ultimately, I believe there should be another way. The current path is failing. We should be bold and extend a hand [for dialogue] on the one side, but hit the terrorist enemy, on the other."

Meanwhile, the political-security cabinet convened to discuss the security situation following Tuesday's attack. Jerusalem police placed concrete barriers at the entrance to the Palestinian neighborhood Sur Baher, on the southeastern outskirts of Jerusalem. Border Police officers are checking all vehicles leaving the neighborhood.  

No checkpoints existed at the entrance to the Jabel Mukabar neighborhood - home of the two perpetrators of the synagogue massacre. The entrances of Abu Tor, Beit Hanina, and Issawiya saw no checkpoints either, but in some places security vehicles were stationed. 

The Palestinian news agency Ma'an reported that the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) terrorist group took responsibility for the synagogue attack, claiming the assailants, cousins Uday and Rassan Abu Jamal, as its members. 

"We are proud of them and consider their actions a natural response to the crimes of the occupation. We stress that armed resistance will continue and that an intifada is imminent without any doubt," the organization said in a statement.