Israeli emergency personnel take a body from the scene of a shooting at the plaza of the Western Wall.

Israeli emergency personnel take a body from the scene of a shooting at the plaza of the Western Wall.

A Jewish man has been shot dead at Jerusalem’s Western Wall after a policeman reportedly mistook him for a terrorist.

Initial reports suggest the dead man, aged 46, worked at a local Chabad soup kitchen and was of French decent.

The policeman has been remanded in custody prior to being presented to a magistrate. The holy site was closed for two hours after the incident.

Police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld: “There was a Jewish guy, an Israeli guy, who was in the bathroom area. He for some reason shouted ‘Allahu Akbar’. A security guard drew his weapon and fired several shots at the suspect. He died from his wounds.

“We’re looking into the background: why the security officer opened fire and what the motives were of the victim. It’s very strange behaviour.”

Paramedic Zeevi Hessed told website NRG: “When we reached the place, we saw him lying at the Western Wall plaza. He had been shot in several parts of his body.  Sadly there was nothing we could do but declare him dead.”

The Western Wall’s rabbi, Shmuel Rabinovitch, told Ynet: “Regardless of the circumstances, such a case is a terrible tragedy.”