At least 44 people have been killed and 150 hospitalized in a stampede at a large Jewish festival in northern Israel, AP reports.
The big picture: Tens of thousands of people gathered at Mount Meron to observe Lag BaOmer, an Orthodox Jewish holiday honoring Rabbi Shimon Bar Yochai, a 2nd century sage buried there, per AP. It's the deadliest civilian disaster in Israel's history, tied with a 2010 forest fire that killed 44.
- The festival was the largest event of its kind held in the country since the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic.
- Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu described the incident as a "heavy disaster," per Reuters.
Editor's note: This story has been updated with new details.