JERUSALEM (Jun. 14)
Enraged Jews took to the streets demanding revenge Thursday after the stabbing of an 11-year-old Jewish boy by an Arab girl, apparently in her teens, at a Jerusalem bus stop.
It was the fourth Arab stabbing in Jerusalem this year and the second in a week.
The victim, Idan Mizrahi of East Talpiyot, underwent surgery at the Hadassah-Hebrew University Hospital in Ein Kerem for a back wound. He was not seriously hurt and was expected to be released from the hospital Friday.
Police sealed off Sur Bahir, an Arab village near the bus stop where the assailant reportedly escaped. At least 25 suspects were detained for questioning.
The police also rushed reinforcements to the adjacent Jewish neighborhoods to prevent residents from accosting Arabs.
Jerusalem Police Commander Arye Bibi visited the scene to try to calm tempers. He said that while he was not surprised to hear of another knife attack, he was surprised that the attacker chose to stab an 11-year-old.
The alleged assailant was described by an eyewitness, 8-year-old Nir Avrahami, as a curly-haired girl of about 16, dressed in white and wearing dark glasses. She sat next to Mizrahi.
“Suddenly, she pulled out a knife, stabbed the boy in the back and ran toward Sur Bahir,” Avrahami recounted.
The victim told his father, Yitzhak Mizrahi, that he dropped his bus ticket and was stabbed as he bent down to pick it up. He said he saw the girl run away.
Doctors said the wound was superficial because the knife did not penetrate deeply.
UPSURGE OF ARSON REPORTED
The incident raised tempers to fever heat only two days after 18-year-old yeshiva student Yosef Edri was stabbed near Damascus Gate in the Old City. Edri was hospitalized, but his wounds were not serious. His assailant fled and is still the object of a manhunt.
Meanwhile, a wave of intifada-related arson against Jewish crops has sparked concern in Israel, drawing a threat of collective punishment for Arab villages from the new minister of agriculture, Rafael Eitan.
Crop fires have become an almost daily occurrence along Wadi Ara, in the Jezreel Valley and the Mount Gilboa region.
An acre of olive trees was set afire Wednesday night, near Kibbutz Magal, southeast of Hadera.
Eitan, who was Israel Defense Force chief of staff during the invasion of Lebanon and now heads the right-wing Tsomet party, said punitive measures would be taken for damage caused agricultural products.
Eitan visited Kibbutz Nir Eliahu near the Arab town of Kalkilya, which lies in the West Bank just across the Green Line from Israel proper. A cornfield there had been set on fire, and damage was done to agricultural implements.
“Kalkilya will pay a thousand times over for every water sprinkler that will be damaged,” Eitan said. He said water quotas of neighboring Arab villages should be reduced and fines imposed on the residents.