A 16-year-old youth was stabbed in the face and back, and badly beaten on Saturday night by a gang of teens for "spreading rumors on Facebook," police said on Tuesday.
The episode began on Saturday evening when a group of youths sat in a park in Ashdod. A second group of teenagers passed by on their way to a birthday party, when a member of the first group recognized a youth from the passing group whom he suspected of spreading rumors against him and his girlfriend on the Internet social networking Web site.
"The youth and his friends decided to 'settle accounts' with the teenager. They approached him and held him down, while the youth offended by the rumors pulled out a pocketknife and stabbed the victim in the face and back. The other youths pounded him with heavy blows," police said.
A friend of the assault victim tried to come to his aid but was also stabbed. The attackers then fled the scene. The injured youths were rushed to Rehovot's Kaplan hospital in moderate condition, police added.
Youth officers from Ashdod police arrived at the hospital and launched an investigation.
In recent days, two youths were arrested on aggravated bodily harm and aggravated assault charges.
Police say the two youths have linked themselves to the incident but deny stabbing anyone. They were brought before an Ashdod magistrate on Saturday evening and their custody was extended by five days.
Police say they expect to make more arrests soon.