Palestinian militant group Hamas called for unrest in the West Bank, following news that President Isaac Herzog would light the first candle of Hanukkah at a contested religious site located in Hebron on Sunday.
The Tomb of the Patriarchs is a biblical site that hosts both Jewish prayer sanctuaries as well as the Ibrahimi Mosque, making the site a friction point between Israelis and Palestinians.
A Hamas official called the planned candle-lighting ceremony as a “provocation” and an “attack,” adding that any resulting violence would be the fault of Israel.
“The Israeli occupation must bear full responsibility for the consequences of this attack,” senior Hamas member Ismail Radwan said, adding the ceremony will provoke the Palestinians who view the act as a “blatant desecration of the sanctity of the mosque.”
He then called on Palestinians to resist the move.
Left-wing organizations also called for a demonstration in Hebron in protest of the planned celebration in honor of the Jewish Festival of Light, which begins Sunday.
Meretz MK Michal Rozen also tweeted that Herzog's decision was "a mistake".
“The president should be a unifying personality,” she wrote. “It’s very sad that the president gives priority to this.”
Republished with permission from i24NEWS