Mosque vandals 'influenced by flotilla'

Kfar Hasidim yeshiva students suspected of radical Ivteen graffiti.

June 10, 2010 10:02
1 minute read.
Star of David graffiti on a mosque.

Graffiti on mosque 311. (photo credit: Reuters)

Four yeshiva youths arrested by police on Wednesday on suspicion of spraying graffiti on a mosque in the northern village of Ivteen "were influenced by the Gaza flotilla" and "events in the West Bank," but do not appear to be part of an organized extremist cell, the detective leading the investigation told The Jerusalem Post on Thursday.

Officers from the Coastal police's central arrested the four men, who study at a yeshiva at Kfar Hasidim, one day after a Star of David was spray painted on the mosque's wall, as well as the messages, "There will be war over Judea and Samaria, " and "This structure is marked for demolition."

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Dep.-cmdr. Michael Shafshek, head of the Coastal Police central unit, said the arrests were made after "we received initial information that referred to them as the suspects. From this stage, we acted immediately, making the arrests and conducting searches."

The suspects appeared at Haifa Magistrate's Court on Thursday morning and were remanded in custody for a further four days.

"They were influenced by the Gaza flotilla, and by events in the West Bank," Shafshek said, referring to recent clashes between settlers and security forces in Bet El over the demolition of two illegal structures.

"But this does not appear to be a well planned act or part of a systematic activity," he added.

"I would like to stress that we are still at the beginning of the investigation," Shafshek said.

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