A second Israeli, apparently a light rail security guard, was very lightly hurt after wrestling with the attacker in an attempt to prevent him from fleeing the scene.
Police said the attacker, a 19-year-old Palestinian from East Jerusalem, was “neutralized” within minutes. He was unharmed and was being questioned by police. Initial reports, corrected by police, had said he was 15.
The terror attack took place just after noon at the light rail stop near the Israel Police’s national headquarters close to Ammunition Hill.
The victim, an Israeli citizen, was evacuated to Shaare Tzedek Hospital in Jerusalem with the knife still lodged in his neck. Doctors rushed him into emergency surgery. Later the hospital said he was in stable condition.
The road, Chaim Bar Lev Boulevard, was closed to traffic in both directions. Light rail service was suspended in the area, but service resumed after 1 p.m.
Nachman Ravivo, a Magen David Adom volunteer, was the first medic to reach the victim. “He was stabbed in the neck. He was evacuated in serious condition to the trauma unit at Shaare Zedek. He was fully conscious and communicated” with the rescue team, Ravivo told Channel 2 in the minutes after the attack.
Police canine units searched the sides of the road after eyewitnesses said the attacker may have thrown something into roadside shrubs.
Mayor Nir Barkat was at the scene with Yerushalayim Police chief Moshe Edri.
After the stabbing, the attacker reportedly attempted but failed to steal the gun from a light rail security guard. After an altercation with the guard, the attacker fled the scene, but was pursued and caught by police motorcyclists.
The previous day saw at least six major terror attacks nationwide with wounded or dead victims amid an escalating wave of violence.