Ten people were arrested during a demonstration on Thursday prior to the funeral of a young Arab man who was shot while disarmed and lying on the ground after stabbing a security guard upon leaving a hospital.
Dozens of people attended the protest, which took place at the Arara Junction in Wadi Ara. Several protesters blocked the junction at one point, and police used crowd control methods to disperse them.
The police's initial investigation claims that 26-year-old Mustafa Younis had threatened two people with a knife before stabbing and lightly wounding a security guard. The guards then shot him five or six times while he was incapacitated.
But his family says he was mentally ill. “He’s a psychiatric patient and has behavioral disorders,” Younis’ uncle, Esam, said on Wednesday. “He came [to the hospital] for counseling before an operation on his head, and also for a psychiatric examination.”
Younis' mother, Abir, said during Thursday’s protest that whoever shot him should stand trial. “My son didn’t do anything,” she said. “He was sick, and they murdered him in cold blood.”
Police, she added, were present in force at the demonstration “as if we were murderers. We’re not murderers and we’re not terrorists.”
The Higher Arab Monitoring Committee said another protest will take place outside the hospital early next week. It urged medical personnel from Sheba to join that demonstration.
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“What happened at Tel Hashomer proves how racistly Arab citizens are treated,” said Mohammed Barakeh, who heads the committee. “That’s why we decided to launch a public battle.”
MK Yousef Jabareen (Joint List) agreed. “Mustafa wasn’t shot in a vacuum,” he said. “It’s the incitement against Arab citizens and the Arab community’s leadership that legitimizes the quick trigger finger.”