Mosque near Haifa Desecrated
Spray-painted Hebrew graffiti was found on a mosque outside the Israeli city of Haifa Wednesday, The Al-Aqsa Foundation for Religious Endowments and Heritage said. The religious foundation distributed pictures of the graffiti on the Omar Bin Khattab Mosque in the village of Ibtin, calling it a “great and reprehensible crime” and calling on Israeli authorities to launch an investigation.
Sprayed on the outside of the mosque, the graffiti reads “there will be a war for Judea and Samaria (West Bank),” “price tag” and “slated for demolition.” A Star of David was also painted on the wall. Car tires in the area were reportedly slashed as well.
“This is a serious crime that cannot be ignored,” mosque employee Mohammed Omaria told Israeli newspaper Haaretz. He added that the crime is part of a recent wave of anti-Arab provocation sweeping Israel.
The Al-Aqsa Foundation blamed the desecration on the “atmosphere of hatred and racism against Arabs and Muslims in the country on the official and popular level.”
Within the past week, two Arab members of the Israeli parliament, Haneen Zuabi and Ahmed Tibi, received death threats. Leaders from the village have said they will appeal to Israeli members of parliament for help and hold a conference in the mosque.
The same mosque came under attack in 1988 when arsonists set fire to it.