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Tisha B’Av: Police indifferent to assaulted Jewish youth

Updated: Jan 24


Honenu Attorney Chayim Bleicher; Photo credit: Honenu

Tuesday, October 22, 2019, 13:54 On the night of the Tisha B’Av fast – this year from sundown August 10 to sundown August 11 – L. was assaulted without cause as he walked through the Old City of Jerusalem on Aqbat e-Saraya Street. The assailants beat him and cursed him. While a medic L. had called to the scene treated his injuries, the assailants threw rocks and glass bottles at them. The medic’s request for assistance from the police was met with an assertion that they were unable to help and a suggestion to flee the site. Honenu Attorney Chayim Bleicher, who is representing L., sent a letter to the police commander requesting an update about the investigation. In his letter Bleicher described the attack: “On the night of Tisha B’Av my client was assaulted and injured on Aqbat e-Saraya Street in the Old City [of Jerusalem]; other streets were closed off by policemen. A group of minorities who had flooded the street with water started to splash Jewish passers-by and harass them. “My client passed the site when suddenly one of the suspects threw a squeegee mop at him. My client grabbed the mop and then one of the assailants jumped on him and knocked him to the ground as the others assailants beat him. They aggressively cursed my client and the ‘Yahud’ [an Arabic pejorative collective term for Jews].” Bleicher related that L. succeeded with great difficulty in escaping to another street, where he called the police and MDA (EMS Organization). L. required medical treatment due to a dislocated shoulder and torn shoulder ligaments. Bleicher’s letter continued: “During treatment [the assailants] started to throw rocks and glass bottles at my client and the medic, which endangered their lives. The medic asked the police forces, who had arrived, to deal with the rock-throwing, and was answered by the officer that there was nothing that they could do other than flee the scene.” Furthermore, the police officer informed the medic that they could not bring a vehicle to evacuate L. and that he must leave the site on his own. L., who was soaking wet from the splashed water, was forced to stumble for a long distance while suffering from intense pain in his arm. Eventually L. was evacuated to the Hadassah Ein Kerem Hospital for medical treatment. One month later he underwent surgery to reattach his shoulder ligaments. Since the attack, L. has been suffering from pain and has not yet returned to work. At the conclusion of his letter, Honenu Attorney Chayim Bleicher noted that when L. had filed a complaint with the police he had been told that the incident had been recorded by security cameras. Bleicher requested information from the district police commander concerning progress in the investigation: “This was a serious attack and a most serious injury. I would like to receive information as soon as possible about the status of the investigation, the detention of suspects and the filing of indictments.”

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