Police condemn derogatory message

Barakeh: Term used to describe Arab attendees at rally reflects mentality.

police car 298.88 (photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski [file])
police car 298.88
(photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski [file])
The police described as a "serious mistake" the beeper message sent out on Friday evening, which used a derogatory term in referring to the Arab participants in a rally in Umm el-Fahm. The message, sent out just before the rally was to take place on Friday night, said "15,000 'Arabushim' [a derogatory word for Arabs] have so far arrived at the rally." According to the police, disciplinary measures would be taken against the person responsible for sending the message. Hadash leader Muhammad Barakeh also called the incident "serious," and said it reflected the prevailing mentality of the police and security forces. An investigation into the source of the message was not enough, Barakeh told Army Radio on Saturday. It was incumbent on the police, he said, to work hard in order to counter these sentiments. Sheikh Raed Salah, leader of the northern branch of the Islamic Movement, said during his address to the rally, "Jerusalem will be the capital city for the new Muslim caliphate very soon." He also said that both former prime minister Ariel Sharon and President Moshe Katsav had been punished by Allah for their plotting to harm the Al-Aksa Mosque.