JERUSALEM (Jun. 29)
Two persons were killed and 47 injured when a bomb exploded in the crowded Mahane Yehuda market here this morning. The blast occurred in a fruit shop and was obviously timed to coincide with the week’s heaviest shopping period and with Vice President Walter Mondale’s visit here beginning tomorrow. One of the dead, reportedly, was a child.
The PLO claimed responsibility for the outrage in a statement in Beirut today. Police detained several suspects but released most of them after routine questioning. The entire market was cleared and cordoned off as ambulances and fire trucks rushed to the scene. Mayor Teddy kollek who visited the blast area this morning said neither acts of terror nor the refusal of foreign states to recognize its status would deter Israel from keeping united Jerusalem as its capital. Visiting West German Foreign Minister Hans-Dietrich Genscher asked for a meeting with Kollek to express his personal condolences for the victims. Genscher was meeting with Foreign Minister Moshe Dayan when the explosion occurred.
The Mahane Yehuda market, located in an old section of west Jerusalem has been a frequent target of terrorist attacks. The worst occurred in November 1968 when a bomb explosion killed 12 persons and injured 50. Five persons were injured in a 1973 bombing and one in 1974. Most of those injured today were reported to have suffered only slight wounds and have been released from the hospital.