Rescue agency Zaka have recovered more than 260 bodies from the Supernova Festival site in Israel.
The event was due to run over the weekend, organised by the Tribe Of Nova. An outdoor rave, around 3000 fans travelled to the site in southern Israel, designed to align with the Jewish festival of Sukkot.
In a note before the event, the Tribe Of Nova wrote: “The time has come when the whole family is about to get together again And what fun it is going to be!”
Tragically, events took another turn. A huge attack by Hamas on sites across Southern Israel has cost hundreds of lives, with Supernova Festival becoming a focus point for the violence.
Details are still emerging, with the planned ambush involving around 50 Hamas terrorists. Festival-goers have described hearing rocket fire, before the militants began shooting indiscriminately into the crowd.
One survivor told Channel 12 it was like “four-five hours of a horror movie… We ran like crazy, it was just crazy.”
Hundreds of festival-goers are missing, with some thought to have been taken hostage by the terrorists.
Rescue agency Zaka have been attempting to retrieve the bodies, in order for the victim’s families to arrange burial. While their actions have been hampered by repeated gunfire, so far around 260 bodies have been retrieved from the site.
The number of deaths far exceeds other recent instances of violence at music events. 60 people were killed during a mass shooting in 2017 at Route 91 Harvest music festival on the Las Vegas Strip in Nevada; the Bataclan terrorist incident in 2015 claimed the lives of 137 people (including seven attackers).
Video from the attack has reached social media – an incredible disturbing watch, it shows festival-goers racing for cover amid the violence. In a statement on the overall attack, Lt Col Jonathan Conricus from the IDF said the situation in Southern Israel was “dire”.
Information is still coming in, although CNN has verified that one woman kidnapped from the festival and displayed by terrorists in Gaza was German-Israeli national Shani Louk. Another clip verified by the broadcaster shows Israeli woman Noa Argamani and her boyfriend Avinatan Or being kidnapped at gunpoint.
NBC spoke to Gili Yoskovich, a Supernova attendee who escaped the violence – her powerful account can be found below.
In a statement the organisers of Supernova Festival expressed their sorrow, writing:
We are full of hope and pray that good news will reach us and you soon.
In moments like these, it is important that we are strong and united, full of faith, support each other and be there for anyone who needs it.
Embracing everyone, Nova tribe.