Six Arrested in Jerusalem for Attacking Arab Pedestrians

Witnesses say suspects walked around Jerusalem city center and asked people questions in attempt to find out if they had an Arabic accent, and attacking those who were presumed to be Arab

Nir Hasson
Nir Hasson
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Police forces around the Damascus Gate in Jerusalem, two days ago.
Police forces around the Damascus Gate in Jerusalem, two days ago. Credit: Ohad Zwigenberg
Nir Hasson
Nir Hasson

The police arrested Tuesday overnight six suspects in allegedly anti-Arab attacks on passersby in downtown Jerusalem.

According to witnesses, the suspects were walking around the city center asking people questions and trying to find out if those who answered had an Arabic accent. The suspects then attacked those who were presumed Arabs.

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Moreover, dozens wandered around Jerusalem's center chanting “Death to Arabs” throughout the night.

Yuval Avraham, who was in a pub when a group of 60 people went by shouting anti-Arab slogans, said that "they were looking for Arabs" and that after someone alerted the group that 'there’s an Arab there,’" the group chased them.

Avarham also recalled hearing a woman who was part of the group that said "they caught eight Arabs and were proud that they ‘almost killed one of them,’" as well as another person who said that they "hit an Arab in the head with rocks."

At that time and for the first time in a week, it was relatively quiet at Jerusalem's Old City Damascus Gate. While police have used mounted forces to disperse the gathering, the incident ended with little resistance and no arrests.

Over the past week, the plaza has been a site for multiple clashes between Palestinians and police over an Israeli decision to put up barriers preventing people from sitting in the Damascus Gate plaza.

The gate's plaza is a popular public area during the month of Ramadan, which started last week, with tens of thousands of people passing through or sitting there every evening.

During the last week, attacks on Jewish passersby around the area of the Damascus Gate were also reported. On Monday, the police arrested a young Palestinian man who filmed himself pouring a cup of coffee on a Jew who walked through the gate

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