Kfar Duma resident speaks to PI

May 16, 2019, 19:14 An Arab resident of Kfar Duma has been recorded giving the town’s accepted version of what happened during the arson attack on the Dawabsheh family’s house, according to which it was not Jews who carried out the attack. According to the resident the police have not taken testimony from him. Attorney Asher Ohayon: “The police intentionally did not approach them [Arab residents of Kfar Duma] in order to prevent revealing facts that do not correspond to the theory that Jews carried out the arson attack.” New documentation from an Arab resident of Kfar Duma, who lives close to the Dawabsheh family’s house, reveals the town’s version of what occurred on the night of the arson attack in July 2015. In a conversation recorded by a private investigator, the Arab told the version of the incident accepted in the town, according to which Jews did not carry out the arson attack on July 31, 2015. Resident: “That’s nonsense. Stop it already.” Investigator: “What do you mean, nonsense? What happened there? It doesn’t seem to be Jews who did it.” Resident: “No, ya zalame [dude]. It wasn’t.” The resident continued to give the town’s version of the incident. Resident: “The first blaze wasn’t for them. Not for them at all!” Investigator: “What does that mean? Not for them?” Resident: “I mean, they didn’t come straight to burn their house. There’s a guy who works for Jews. He stole and made trouble. Now he’s bought a house in Shechem. Now he goes around saying, ‘I’m in Shechem, I’m at a restaurant.’ His name is so-and-so. So people knew that his house was empty. That guy’s house. They went to burn his house.” The resident referred to the arson attack on the house of the Dawabsheh family’s neighbors, which was set on fire before the Dawabshehs’ house, on the same night. The resident attributed the arson to an internal dispute. The resident continued and described the incident: “At that moment they were visiting that guy’s father, the guy who owned the house, and they returned at that moment to their house to sleep. They turned on the light. The people who set the fire thought that they had seen them and knew who they were so they set them on fire.” The resident continued the description: The people who set the neighbor’s house on fire decided to set the Dawabshehs’ house on fire because they feared that the Dawabshehs would would report their identities. Resident: “He’s not human. I mean he’s not a decent guy. Now they, the ones who were burnt, they were at their parents’ home. They came back at the moment of the fire to that house, then someone set that house on fire, the guy who was a thief’s house. He thought they saw him and knew who set the fire so they set him on fire, so that he wouldn’t say who set the house on fire. You understand me?” Someone else joined the conversation: “Yeah. They wanted them – the child who was burnt and the parents – they wanted them to die so that they wouldn’t talk.” Resident: “That’s right.” The resident also said that neither the police nor other security forces took testimonies from residents of the town about the arson incident. It should be noted that the resident’s description fits the chain of events that occurred in the town that night because indeed the neighbor’s house was set on fire first and only a while after that was the Dawabsheh family’s house set on fire. Additionally, several testimonies, which support the town’s accepted version of events, were submitted to the court by eye witnesses to the incident. The private investigator who recorded the conversation transferred the findings to Honenu and to the defense team of Amiram Ben Uliel, the central defendant in the case. Attorney Asher Ohayon, who is representing Ben Uliel, made a statement in light of the findings: “The tools that are available to the Israeli Police in order to thoroughly investigate the truth are many and varied. There are certainly many more [witnesses] like the Kfar Duma resident in the video clip. Unfortunately the police intentionally have not approached them, in order to prevent revealing facts that do not correspond to the theory that Jews carried out the arson attack on the Dawabsheh family’s house.” Ohayon added: “It is not yet too late, even though it is late, and better late than never. I call on the Israeli Police to come to their senses and seriously investigate also this angle of investigation. In this town there have been violent incidents between various segments of the population, before the Dawabsheh family’s house was set on fire and also afterwards. It is a shame that the investigative authorities in Israel are comfortable ignoring them and intractably adhering to the concept that Jews carried out an arson attack on the Dawabsheh family’s house. During the trial extremely significant evidence has been revealed, which indicates that the fire was not set out of a nationalist motivation. Due to the gag order on the legal proceedings, it is not possible at this stage to reveal this significant evidence to the general public.”

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