JERUSALEM (JTA) — Israeli police have arrested nine Jewish teens suspected in a series of attacks on Arabs.
The seven minors, including a 14-year-old girl, and two young men have been arrested over the last two weeks, police announced Tuesday after a gag order on the case was lifted.
The Jewish teens reportedly had the girl seduce the Arabs and lead them to various meeting places, including Independence Park, where they would attack them with stones, glass bottles and pepper spray. Several of the Arabs required hospitalization.
The suspects confessed to police that their acts were nationalistically motivated, according to reports. They are under house arrest; more arrests are expected.
Meanwhile, about 200 residents of the coastal city of Bat Yam, south of Tel Aviv, protested Monday night against renting apartments to Arabs and against relationships between the town’s Jewish women and Arab men under the banner "Keeping Bat Yam Jewish."
Most of the protesters were young and religious, Haaretz reported. The chief rabbi of Bat Yam two weeks ago signed his name to a rabbinic ruling forbidding Jews from renting to Arabs.
Bat Yam Mayor Shlomo Lahyani condemned the demonstration. A counter protest was mounted.