Police arrested five Jewish teens on suspicion they assaulted an Arab man in Jerusalem and broke his leg last week. According to police, three of the suspects, agd 16, confessed to attacking the man and said they did so because they thought he was" taking advantage of a Jewish girl."
One suspect has been remanded in custody for two additional days. The remaining four will appear before the Jerusalem Magistrate's Court for a remand hearing on Sunday.
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The victim, Ibrahim Abu Taha, 28, was taken to the Shaare Zedek Medical Center in Jerusalem, where it was determined his leg had been broken. Police estimate there will be further arrests in the case.
According to Abu Ta'a, the assault occurred as he dropped off a co-worker after leaving a work event at the Mamilla Hotel and claims it was purely motivated by racism.
One of the suspects in court (Photo: Gil Yohanan)
Abu Ta'a said that after the work event ended, around midnight, one of his female colleagues asked him to accompany her home as she was intoxicated. "I was with two Jewish friends from work," he said adding that "when we got to her apartment, a group of seven or eight Jewish youths, aged 16-20 asked us what we were doing there.
"When they heard my female co-worker say 'Ibrahim, don't talk to them,' they began beating me on my leg with an iron rod."
Abu Ta'a said he was convinced that this was a racially motivated attack. "They didn't hit any of my Jewish friends," he said.
"It lasted about a minute or two. When my friend called the police, the gang fled the scene," he added.
He further said that he did not do anything to the Jewish youths. "I didn't speak to them, provoke them or attack them. The minute they heard my name, they started hitting me. That was it."
Abu Ta'a is scheduled to return to the hospital on Saturday to undergo surgery. He expressed satisfaction over the arrests. "I don't believe what they're saying. They're saying it because they're afraid. They've caused me irreparable damage. They're just barbaric."
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