ADL Condemns Torching of House Rented by Jews in Arab Village
Jerusalem, February 12, 2008 …The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) expressed outrage today over the torching of a house rented by Jews in the mostly Druze village of Peki'in in the Galilee.
Perpetrators of this alleged hate crime set ablaze a house next to an ancient synagogue in Peki'in. The house, which was severely damaged, was rented by a Jewish man from a local village who planned to open a guest house for visitors to the site.
Police said the arson was apparently motivated by a local gang of Druze as a signal to Jews to stay out of the town, a site where Jews have lived continuously for thousands of years with Druze and Christians. Police are investigating the incident but no arrests have been made yet. Rioting in the village last October also damaged Jewish property.
ADL's Israel office issued the following statement:
We condemn this hateful act of intolerance. None of us can afford to be bystanders in the face of blatant bigotry and violence.
We commend the police in the Northern District for taking it seriously and we anticipate a prompt and thorough investigation. All communities must speak out and teach our children that hate against one is hate against all.
Perpetrators of such hate crimes send a message to their victims – and everyone else who shares the victim's characteristics – that Jews in this mixed village are not welcome or safe. We strongly condemn this intolerance.
The Anti-Defamation League, founded in 1913, is the world's leading organization fighting anti-Semitism through programs and services that counteract hatred, prejudice and bigotry.