President Barack Obama condemned the killing of four Israelis on the eve of Middle East peace talks, saying the attacks would not deter the process of reconciliation in the region.
With Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu by his side Wednesday, Obama called the attack "senseless slaughter" that won't stop the U.S. from seeking security in Israel.
The terror group Hamas has claimed responsibility for killings, which happened late Tuesday near Israel's ancient capital of Hebron.
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"An Israeli vehicle driving in the road received attack, a vicious attack, with fire that was open towards the vehicle," said Avital Leibovich, Israeli Defense Forces spokeswoman. "As a result four Israeli civilians were killed, amongst them a pregnant woman."
Netanyahu applauded Obama for standing with Israel against the attack. The Israeli prime minister was in Washington, D.C., to begin the peace talk process with Palestinian leaders.
"[Those behind the attacks are people who] trample human rights into the dust and butcher everything they oppose," Netanyahu said at the White House.
One of the rescue volunteers who responded to the emergency found out his wife was among the dead.
Jewish residents mourned the dead while thousands of Hamas supporters celebrated in Gaza and their spokesman praised the killings.
Palestinian Prime Minister Salam Fayad said the incident contradicts "Palestinian national interests" while Israel condemned the killings.
"We witnessed today a savage murder of four innocent Israelis," said Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. "There are seven new orphans that were added to the circle of grief and misery. We will not let terror decide where Israelis live or the configuration of our final borders."
Jewish leaders in Judea and Samaria said because of the killings, they will begin building Jewish communities Wednesday in honor of the dead and in defiance of Netanyahu's building freeze scheduled to expire later this month.