NEW YORK (VINnews) — An Israeli citizen was stabbed to death in the Moroccan city of Tangier on Wednesday, according to a report by ZAKA, the Israeli rescue group which was working to bring the body of the victim to Israel for burial.
Reports in Morocco say the victim, identified as the 36-year-old owner of a kosher restaurant in the city, was apparently giving food to a homeless person whom he was acquainted with when he was attacked and stabbed with a small knife. The assailant attempted to escape but was apprehended by police.
The victim died on the way to the hospital.
The motive for the attack was not immediately clear but the suspect, who appeared to be mentally disturbed, had asked to convert to Judaism in order to receive free meals. He had also requested a job from the restaurant manager.
Police are also investigating the possibility that the attack, which comes a few months after Israel established formal relations with Morocco, stemmed from antisemitic or nationalistic motives. In the wake of the establishment of the bilateral diplomatic relations, Algeria decided to cut of ties with Morocco.
ZAKA reported that “an Israeli citizen was stabbed to death in Morocco. The circumstances are being investigated by the local police. The Foreign Ministry and ZAKA are working to bring his body to Israel.”