A Palestinian man saved five American yeshiva students from Brooklyn from being lynched in Hebron after they took a wrong turn Thursday on their way to the Cave of the Patriarchs.
The students entered the Palestinian neighborhood of Jabal Johar after having been misdirected there by the navigational system Waze, according to security sources.
Palestinians on the street who saw their car immediately threw stones and a firebomb at the vehicle. The yeshiva students were able to escape from the car before the Palestinians torched it.
A Palestinian resident of the neighborhood helped rescue them and sheltered them in his apartment.
Fayez Abu Hamdiyeh, who lives in the neighborhood, said he let five Jewish “settlers” into his house after he noticed they were being chased by Palestinian youths.
He said the “settlers” told him that they had entered the neighborhood with their car before being pelted with stones.
Abu Hamdiyeh said he used the mobile phone of one of the students to phone the police and ask for help.
The Civil Administration of Judea and Samaria said it coordinated the rescue of the young men with the Palestinian Authority security forces, the IDF and a police reconnaissance unit.
Two of the five were lightly wounded in the face from broken glass.
Israeli security forces and Palestinians on the street continued to clash after the rescue.
A spokesman for the Hebron Jewish community, Noam Arnon, said the IDF used to have a checkpoint at the entry to the neighborhood, but last week handed it over to the Palestinian security forces, Arnon said. He called on the army to restore the checkpoint.
“The fact that Jews had to be miraculously rescued shows that handing over territory to terrorists always leads to a disaster,” he said.
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