11 J'lem Teens Suspected of Racially Motivated Assault Against Arabs

Aggressors believed to have followed an instant message calling to 'put an end' to Arab presence in Pisgat Zeev.

The Jerusalem District Court on Monday indicted eleven Jerusalem teens on suspicion they stabbed and assaulted two Arab youths on the eve of Holocaust Remembrance Day.

According to the indictment, Yaakov Ben Haim, Liran Asraf and Morali Ben Moshe, all aged 18-19, as well as eight other minors whose names cannot be revealed, allegedly stabbed two Arabs aged 16 and 18 near the entrance to the shopping mall of Jerusalem's Pisgat Zeev neighborhood.

The aggressors left one of the victims lying unconscious, while they allegedly stabbed the other youth several times in his back. Both victims were later hospitalized at Hadassah University Hospital in Jerusalem.

The suspects are said to have gathered at the Pisgat Zeev commercial center on May 1 following a message that was spread around on ICQ, an Israeli-based instant messaging computer program.

The wording of the message stated: "It's time to put an end to all the Arabs that hang out in the neighborhood and at the mall, whistle to girls, curse and threaten little children. Any Jew who wishes to put an end to this should arrive at the burger ranch, where we will finally teach them not to walk around in our area. Whoever is willing to do this and has the Jewish blood to do so - write down your name and reply to this message."

Dozens of teens are believed to have replied and subsequently arrived at the scene carrying planks, batons and knives. The indictment states that another message of this kind was also sent a week later, towards the eve of the Memorial Day for Israel's Fallen Soldiers and Victims of Terrorism.

The suspects are charged with racially motivated aggravated assault, participation in a skirmish and conspiring to execute a crime.