Nearly 40 teens riot in Hebron, damage Palestinian property; Pines demands action against rioters.
By JPOST STAFF, YAAKOV KATZPublished: NOVEMBER 26, 2008 12:31Advertisement
Rabbi Yigal Shandrapi, the head of Yeshuat Mordechai Yeshiva, is expected to be brought before the Jerusalem Magistrate's Court on Wednesday for a remand hearing, after police from the Judea and Samaria Division arrested him on Tuesday on suspicion of inciting Jewish youth to riot.
According to the allegations, Shandrapi incited the teenagers two separate cases, the most recent of which occurred two months ago at the Yad Yair outpost, in the West Bank. During that incident, soldiers described being attacked and said that their vehicles were damaged.
Meanwhile, nearly 40 Jewish youth reportedly rampaged through the streets of a Palestinian neighborhood in Hebron overnight Tuesday, puncturing car tires and shattering windows in Arab homes.
The youths were also suspected of spray-painting a Star of David on one of the houses in the area.
While no arrests had been made, police were investigating the incident.
Responding to the latest developments, the chairman of the Knesset Interior Committee, MK Ophir Paz-Pines (Labor), called on Defense Minister Ehud Barak and Public Security Minister Avi Dichter to clamp down on the offenders.
"This is an additional crossing of a red line by organized, dangerous thugs, and it must be responded to with the utmost seriousness and gravity," Paz-Pines said. "The police must immediately initiate a thorough investigation and start a series of arrests in order to put an end to the 'Wild West' in Hebron, and to establish, without hesitation, the rule of law."
Meanwhile, Barak warned on Wednesday that if settlers do not voluntarily evacuate the dispute four-story building in Hebron, known as Beit Hashalom, the defense ministry will evacuate them by force.
Speaking during a tour of the IDF's Hebron brigade, Barak stressed that the evacuation would be carried out by police and that the IDF would provide surrounding support.
Barak also harshly criticized the recent violence and said that any harm inflicted on a soldier or policeman or anyone who represented the state of Israel was a "grave incident which expands the rift which is already harming the gentle fabric of democracy in Israel."
Barak said Israel must "arrest these attackers, punish them with all the severity of the law, since their actions are aimed at undermining the authority of the State."
The defense minister, toured the area with IDF Chief of General Staff Lt.-Gen. Gabi Ashkenazi and OC Central Command Maj.-Gen. Gadi Shamni.
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