Israeli soldier dies at Sarkozy farewell ceremony

Wednesday, June 25, 2008 |  Israel Today Staff  

An Israeli soldier apparently committed suicide at a farewell ceremony for visiting French President Nicolas Sarkozy on Tuesday, creating a major security scare.

The soldier, a member of Israel's Border Guards, was positioned about 150 yards from where Sarkozy and his wife were boarding their plane on the tarmac at Ben Gurion International Airport. When the soldier's gun discharged, security forces initially feared a terrorist attack was underway and quickly removed Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and President Shimon Peres from the scene. Sarkozy and his wife were whisked aboard their plane by their own bodyguards.

Security officials shortly after discovered that the soldier had shot and fatally wounded himself. Olmert then returned to the scene, boarded the Sarkozy's plane and explained what had transpired.

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