Beitar Jerusalem soccer fans are suspected of assaulting Arab workers at a McDonald’s in Jerusalem on Sunday.
McDonald’s security footage shows soccer fans trying to break into the restaurant, located in Jerusalem's Beit Hakerem neighborhood. A group of fans are seen throwing objects and beating workers with chairs. The footage also displays the employees throwing chairs at the fans. The police arrested three suspects in the case.
The Jerusalem Magistrate's Court on Monday extended the remand of two suspects in the attack until next Sunday. The third suspect was put under house arrest for five days. The fans were also barred from all soccer stadiums in Israel until the end of the year.
In another incident, three fans were arrested for disrupting a Beitar Jerusalem training session. The court barred them from all soccer games for the remainder of the soccer season and they were ordered to report to a local police station at halftime of every Beitar Jerusalem game.
“I view the rioting of Beitar Jerusalem fans and the assaulting of McDonald’s employees with great severity,” Jerusalem Police Chief Yossi Pariente said during a briefing with the district’s police commanders ahead of the Islamic month of Ramadan. Pariente stressed that the police recommends that the suspects be indicted and punished severely, as part of the fight against racism and violence.
In February, Beitar Jerusalem's offices were torched, seriously damaging the premises. The arson occurred in the wake of several violent incidents stemming from the team's acquisition of two Muslim players from Chechnya, Gabriel Kadiev and Zaur Sadaev.
Israel Police arrested two fans, members of "La Familia," a radical group of fans that is routinely abusive toward opposing players, chanting racist and anti-Arab slogans.
The investigation uncovered that the arson was planned a few days in advance. In addition, it was nationalistically motivated.
Last year, some 300 Beitar Jerusalem fans assaulted an Arab cleaning crew at the capital's Malha shopping center, in what was said to be one of Jerusalem's biggest-ever ethnic clash. Following the report on Haaretz, police arrested 16 fans suspected of taking part in the incident.
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