Israeli Arabs react with violence to IDF operations in Gaza
Clashes with police break out in communities across Israel; Child hurt by stone-thrower near Beitar Illit.
Israeli Arabs on Saturday protested Israel Defense Forces attacks in the Gaza Strip, with demonstrations and clashes with police breaking out in communities throughout Israel.
In East Jerusalem, a police officer was lightly hurt by an Israeli Arab who hit him with his car. The driver, who has a criminal record, was arrested by police shortly thereafter.
On Salah-a-Din Street in East Jerusalem, dozens of youths lit dumpsters and hurled stones at police. One assailant was arrested by police at the scene.
In the Shuafat refugee camp, hundreds of Palestinian protestors threw rocks at security forces.
In the West Bank settlement of Beitar Illit, a three-year-old boy was lightly hurt after he was hit in the eye by a rock thrower.
In the Bedouin village of Rahat in the Negev, around 400 residents protested the attacks, while mosques throughout the town broadcast prayers of mourning.
Hadash, the predominantly Arab leftist party, will stage a demonstration on Saturday in Nazareth to protest the IAF operations in Gaza. Hadash chairman Mohammed Barakeh called on the government "to immediately halt the crime in the Gaza Strip."
"Escalation will not bring quiet and calm," Barakeh said. "It is inconceivable for the Palestinian people in Gaza to live between starvation and bombardment. The government and the defense minister are trying to gain political capital in an election period on account of the bloodletting of the Palestinian people."
MK Jamal Zahalka, who is the chairman of the Balad faction, called for Defense Minister Ehud Barak to be tried for "war crimes" in Gaza.
"Barak is trying to win votes in exchange for Palestinian blood," he said.
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