Violence in Jerusalem: Police disperse activists protesting surge in Arab attacks on Jews

A policeman from the cavalry unit was wounded after an Arab protester hit him in the face with a rock.

By World Israel News Staff

Protesting the violent attacks in recent days by Arabs against Jewish-Israeli civilians, particularly the ultra-Orthodox, hundreds of activists from the right-wing Lehava organization clashed Thursday evening with young Arabs and police forces in the Damascus Gate area of ​​the Old City of Jerusalem, Israel’s Channel 12 reported.

Since Ramadan’s start on April 13, there have been daily riots by Palestinian protesters in Jerusalem with clashes focused around the Old City’s Herod and Damascus gates. Hundreds of Palestinians have participated in the violence.

Earlier this week, a 60-year-old rabbi was beaten by Arab youths in Jaffa.

Bentzi Gopstein, head of Lehava, said in a statement earlier in the day that his followers would march with “Israeli flags and lots of Jewish pride, without fear.” This, to counteract what he called the “unprecedented weakness” of the Israeli police in the face of a series of attacks on Jews in the capital ever since the Muslim holy month began last week.

“Instead of dealing a fatal blow to terror and causing the Arabs to think a thousand times before they dare lift a hand against a Jew, the police are displaying unprecedented weakness, which only fuels the terror and causes it to grow,” the statement said.

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According to Channel 12, several people were arrested amid the violence when the Lehava activists and young Arabs clashed near Damascus Gate.

The police arrived to divide the two camps. Towards midnight, they began dispersing the roughly 400 Lehava protesters, using stun grenades and cavalry. Meanwhile, Arab protesters set fire to cans, set off fireworks and threw rocks.

During their attempts to disperse the violent crowd, a policeman from the cavalry unit was wounded after being hit in the face by a rock. One of the Arabs was slightly injured, apparently by a police stun grenade.

The Lehava organization stated their demand that the government and the police put an end to “the abandonment of the residents of Jerusalem, who are attacked daily by Arabs.”

“We are a free people in our country, but instead we have become a persecuted people in our country,” Lehava said.