Israel Lost Two Soldiers Wednesday

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JERUSALEM, Israel -- Two IDF soldiers died Wednesday: one during a military exercise in the south and the second on Mt. Herzl in Jerusalem during rehearsals for next week's Independence Day celebrations.

Yehoshua Hafetz collapsed early Wednesday during screening tests for a combat engineering unit at an IDF base south of Beersheva. Despite rigorous CPR, he was pronounced dead Eilat's Yoseftal Medical Center. Preliminary findings indicate he died from a heart defect, which may have been exacerbated by the heat.

The IDF and the Medical Corps both launched investigations into his death.

A little later, Hila Bezaleli, 20, was on the stage at Mt. Herzl when a cable connecting steel lighting fixtures broke, trapping her under heavy steel rigging that crashed to the ground. Four others were injured, one seriously.

Police launched an investigation into the accident, initially questioning eight people. Four of them, including the stage designer, safety consultant and engineer, will appear in Jerusalem's Magistrate Court Thursday, where they could be charged with death by negligence. 

Bezaleli was buried Wednesday afternoon on Mt. Herzl, with family, friends and soldiers in attendance.

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