Police arrest three suspects over the torching of two Arab students' cars
The cars were set alight one day after a college event meant to promote dialogue between Jews and Arabs led to heated arguments between the two groups of students.
Three people have been arrested on suspicion of setting alight two cars belonging to Arab students at Safed Academic College, the Safed Magistrate's Court revealed on Tuesday, after a gag order was lifted on the case.
Safed Magistrate's Court judge Saab Dabur responded to a request made by Haaretz on Tuesday morning to release to the public the information that three suspects were arrested on Thursday last week – one day after the incident occurred.
The remaining details of the affair are still prohibited from publication.
The two cars were set alight last week in the student dormitory parking lot after a college event meant to promote dialogue between Jews and Arabs led to heated arguments between the two groups of students. A third car, which was parked next to them, was damaged by the flames. Both of the cars belonging to the Arab students had bumper stickers on them revealing their owners' religions, one of whom is Christian and the other Muslim.
In addition to the cars that were set alight, anti-Arab graffiti was sprayed on walls of the college, including "Arabs out," "Death to Arabs," and "Revenge."
Ali Naami, the Muslim owner of one of the cars which was set on fire, said that an intense debate broke out at the student event on Tuesday which preceded the arson.
According to Naami, "over the course of the event, a heated discussion broke out between the Jews and the Arabs, over the course of which someone yelled at us that the State of Israel is the Jewish state meant for Jews – and we, as Arabs, do not have a place in it."
Naami said that he and his friends from class, among them Jews, protested these statements. "There was a lot of anger," he added, "these kinds of things cannot be allowed to be said."
Naami added that he is convinced that his car and his friend's car were set on fire in response to the argument at the event.