Sunday, January 26

Ultra-Orthodox Jews hurl stones at Palestinian vehicles in Jerusalem

JERUSALEM (Ma'an) -- Dozens of ultra-Orthodox Jews hurled stones at cars traveling on route 1 highway in Jerusalem on Saturday evening, in what victims claimed were racially-motivated assaults targeting Palestinians.

Eyewitnesses told a Ma'an reporter that about 60 ultra-Orthodox Jewish men hurled rocks at vehicles driven by Palestinians with Israeli registration plates and assaulted a bicyclist before stealing his bike.

Muhammad Abu al-Hummus, a Palestinian Jerusalem resident whose vehicle was attacked, said that some of the attackers were hurling stones from balconies and windows while others were on the road itself.

Abu al-Hummus added that when his car was hit, he stopped and stepped out, but attackers continued to pelt him with stones injuring his foot.

Abu al-Hummus confirmed that a bicyclist was attacked with stones and his bike was stolen.

A group of Israeli troops and police horsemen arrived on the scene, Abu al-Hummus said, but they merely watched the assailants and did not intervene.

Abu al-Hummus said that the police told the victims to file complaints at Israeli police stations.

Israeli police spokesperson Micky Rosenfeld told Ma'an that he had no reports of the incident, possibly because no complaint had been received.

There have been tensions in the past between ultra-Orthodox Jewish settlers in East Jerusalem and local Palestinian residents, specifically in the area of highway 1.

In addition, ultra-Orthodox Jews often protest against vehicular traffic on Saturday as they deem it to violate Jewish proscriptions on working on the Sabbath.

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