Jewish Teens Arrested Over Attack on Palestinian in East Jerusalem

Police arrest two suspects after a group of people attack a Palestinian man in the East Jerusalem neighborhood of Sheikh Jarrah

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A vandalized vehicle in Sheikh Jarrah, Jerusalem, on  Thursday.
A vandalized vehicle in Sheikh Jarrah, Jerusalem, on Thursday.
Nir Hasson
Nir Hasson

Israel Police arrested Friday two 16-year-olds Jews in suspicion of involvement in an attack on a Palestinian man and of vandalizing vehicles in the East Jerusalem neighborhood of Sheikh Jarrah.

A video of the incident shows a group of people throwing stones at a car in which a man is and then fleeing. According to other testimonies the group also attacked him with pepper spray, and he required medical attention.

Jerusalem Deputy Mayor Aryeh King, a prominent settler-activist in Sheikh Jarrah, condemned the incident: "Savage lawbreakers like these are not welcome in the areas of Jewish settlement in the eastern part of the city," he wrote.

"Riffraff who attack innocent people and stone those who are not involved in harming Jews, are an obstacle to the expansion of Jewish settlement and aid settlement opponents," he added.

This incidence took place against the backdrop of an attack carried out by a 14-year-old Palestinian resident of Sheikh Jarrah who was arrested on Wednesday for allegedly stabbing her 26-year-old Jewish neighbor.

The attack was perpetrated following a stabbing in Jerusalem. A neighborhood resident, about 14 years old, was arrested on suspicion of stabbing on Wednesday her Jewish neighbor, 26, who suffered minor injuries.

The suspect fled immediately after the incident and was arrested about an hour later in a nearby high school. She denies involvement, but police say they have evidence connecting her to the stabbing. She and a friend suspected of abetting her has been remanded until Monday.

Tensions between Jewish and Palestinian residents of the neighborhood have boiled over in the last couple of weeks as 13 Palestinian families are facing imminent eviction from their homes.  

In November, a group of residents of the East Jerusalem Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood rejected a compromise that had been proposed by Israel's Supreme Court. The plan would have allowed them to remain in their homes for at least 15 years, in exchange for recognizing the ownership interests of a settler group to which they would have paid nominal rent.  

Vehicles owned by Jews were torched, while the tires of 12 cars owned by Palestinians were slashed. Palestinian residents extinguished the Hanukkah menorah put in the street by Jewish residents in Sheikh Jarrah during the recent Jewish holiday.

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