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Security Beefed Up on West Bank

Israel beefed up its security forces on the West Bank today to handle continuing disturbances stemming from Sunday’s events at the Machpela Cave in Hebron, where Arab rioters destroyed Sifrei Torahs and prayer books, and in anticipation of new outbreaks on the third anniversary of the Yom Kippur War.

The demonstrations that have been going on since rumors spread alleging that Jews had desecrated the Koran in Hebron, are mainly by high school students. For the third consecutive day they boycotted classes to roam the streets of towns in the Samaria district stoning passing vehicles, setting up barricades and burning piles of tires.

Whenever security forces appeared, the youngsters dispersed only to regroup and demonstrate elsewhere. Many of their slogans were in praise of Egyptian and Syrian forces who launched their surprise attack on Israel three years ago today and won initial battlefield victories.

Several Yom Kippur War demonstrations were held in Nablus. In Ramallah and Jericho, students remained in their classrooms, not for lessons but as a sit-in demonstration against Israel.

Meanwhile, thousands of people from all over Israel were streaming towards Hebron this morning to take part in the burial rites there later in the day for the Torah scrolls defiled by Arab rioters. (See full story P. 3.)

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