Hevron Residents: Fire at Cemetery was Arson. Police Disagree
By Gil Ronen
The Jewish cemetery in Hevron was damaged Thursday night in a fire that local residents say was undoubtedly a deliberate terror act. Police, however, said the fire was inadverently started by Arab children who were at play and not an act of arson. Residents said that graves that are over 200 years old were damaged. Police deny this as well.
Jewish residents of the ancient Biblical city say this is the third time in two weeks that arsonists have set fires in the cemetery.
A source in the Hevron Security Department told Arutz Sheva that an IDF observation post identified flames in the Jewish cemetery at around midnight between Thursday and Friday. A military patrol was directed to the spot and a reinforcement was sent in, along with the Hevron Security Department.
"We saw flames coming from the cemetery,” the source said. “The flames' source was at the fence – a fact that points at suspected arson. We called the fire brigade and began to fight the fire. By a great miracle the flames did not reach the Rabbis' plot but Hevron's ancient graves were damaged.”
MK Dr. Michael Ben Ari (National Union) asked Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu to instruct the Israel Security Agency (Shin Bet) and police to make a supreme effort to find the arsonists. “It is strange that Netanyahu, who is quick to denounce the burning of a small carpet in a mosque, is silent when the problem is daily pogroms against Jews,” Ben Ari said.
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