Mayor Barkat is have-a-go hero in blade attack


Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat found himself in the spotlight this week after he helped apprehend an 18-year-old Palestinian who stabbed a civilian near City Hall on Sunday evening.

The mayor, who had been passing the scene in his car, jumped out with a bodyguard and overpowered the attacker. The Palestinian man threw away his knife when the bodyguard threatened to shoot him.

A 27-year-old Israeli was moderately injured in the attack.

The incident, which took place during a relative lull in terror attacks, was featured prominently in the Israeli media and immediately became part of the election campaign. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu personally met the mayor to congratulate him and Likud campaign headquarters issued a statement saying that the attack occurred "only weeks after Tzipi Livni, Labour's hidden candidate for prime minister, repeated that she is prepared to consider dividing Jerusalem. If Tzipi and Bougie form a leftist government, Hamas will be in the heart of Jerusalem." The Zionist Union responded saying that it was "another low and deplorable lie".

Mr Barkat, currently in his second term as mayor, is widely expected to join national politics in the future. While not officially a Likud party member, he has grown close to Mr Netanyahu in recent years.

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