J’lem Old City shop van­dal­ized dur­ing hol­i­day

The Jerusalem Post - - NEWS - • By UDI SHAHAM

A shop lo­cated next to Da­m­as­cus Gate in the Mus­lim Quar­ter of the cap­i­tal’s Old City was van­dal­ized and its worker was at­tacked late Wed­nes­day night by wor­shipers who were com­ing back from the West­ern Wall.

It was re­ported that hun­dreds of peo­ple stormed the shop – the only one that had been open that night – and at­tacked the worker, Ibrahim Hashel­mon, who was lightly wounded and was rushed to the hos­pi­tal.

Talk­ing to Chan­nel 10 News, Hashel­mon said that the po­lice, who have a per­ma­nent post right next to the shop, did not ap­proach the tu­mult, but came to the scene only af­ter the dam­age was done.

“They threw an ice-cream re­frig­er­a­tor at me... They hit me in the head... They broke the whole place, and spilled soft drinks all over the floor. They took a fire ex­tin­guisher and hit me on the head with it,” he said.

“I be­came dizzy and then puked. Only at the very end some po­lice­men came and said that they will call an am­bu­lance. It took them a while be­fore they started push­ing peo­ple away,” he said.

Po­lice called the in­ci­dent a “quar­rel be­tween young peo­ple.”

“Dur­ing the night it was re­ported that a fight broke out be­tween young peo­ple at El Wad Ha­gai Street, in which stones were thrown,” a po­lice state­ment read. “dam­age was done to a store, a mo­tor­cy­cle and a car parked nearby. The po­lice in­ter­vened and sep­a­rated the two sides. An in­ves­ti­ga­tion was launched.”

Po­lice told The Jerusalem Post that no ar­rests had been made.

Hatem Abu al-Daba’at, the owner of the shop, told the Post that the place was de­stroyed by the ri­ot­ers.

“All of my equip­ment and all the re­frig­er­a­tors were ru­ined, and the place needs a full restora­tion,” he lamented.

Abu al-Daba’at said that it was the first time his shop had suf­fered this kind of harsh vi­o­lence.

“We know that usu­ally when prayer-go­ers come back from the Ko­tel dur­ing hol­i­days they shout and curse, but nor­mally the po­lice stop them be­fore they do any­thing,” he said.

“Yes­ter­day they came and started throw­ing ob­jects at Ibrahim the worker and the three cus­tomers sit­ting there. They started hit­ting them, broke ev­ery­thing and shouted, ‘Death to all Arabs,’” he said. “I don’t know why, but for some rea­son the po­lice did not in­ter­fere and did not do any­thing.”

The left-wing or­ga­ni­za­tion Ir Amim crit­i­cized the po­lice for not tak­ing ac­tion.

“This is not the first time that the po­lice are not do­ing their job to pro­tect the Pales­tinian res­i­dents of east Jerusalem,” the NGO said in a state­ment. “If that is not enough, they added an­other wrong­do­ing by hur­ry­ing to put out a state­ment that hides the truth from the pub­lic about the as­sault­ing of Pales­tini­ans.”


THIS MUS­LIM QUAR­TER shop was de­stroyed by wor­shipers re­turn­ing from the West­ern Wall on Wed­nes­day night.

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