Israeli police patrol the Red Sea resort of Eilat (AFP/, Jack Guez)
Israeli forces shot dead an American who opened fire in a hotel lobby packed with tourists.
Israeli forces shot dead an American man who opened fire in a seaside hotel packed with tourists on Friday, killing one person.
Police and military troops swiftly surrounded the hotel in the Red Sea resort city of Eilat after the man – a former employee of the hotel – “grabbed a weapon from a security guard and shot a hotel worker,” police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld said.
The man barricaded himself in the hotel kitchen, shooting back at law enforcement officers. He was shot dead by members of a military counter-terrorism squad, a military source said.
An Israeli hotel guest, Aviram Sela, said he tried to wrestle the gunman to the ground before he started shooting, as terrified tourists dived for cover behind a sofa in the hotel lobby.
“We saw him beating the guard and grab his weapon and the magazine,” Sela told Israeli television, adding that the gunman then took aim at a member of his family.
Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak told Army Radio the incident “appears to be an internal dispute”.
Eilat, on the border with Egypt and Jordan, has been a target of militant attacks in the past.