Three Jews were arrested Sunday for alleged incitement on the Temple Mount, for offenses which ranged from verbal insults to simply wearing a Jewish garment. According to The Jewish Press, however, nobody was arrested for an assault on an Israeli police officer which took place there the same day.
The Jerusalem Post reported that a man was arrested for responding “Muhammad is a pig!” to an Arab mob shouting anti-Semitic slurs. He is the fourth Israeli to be arrested for making similar remarks in a trend begun by 20-year-old mother Aviya Morris last month.
A second individual, a 14-year-old boy, was detained for wearing a religious garment called tzitzit over his clothing. Members of the Islamic Waqf complained to Israeli police about the teen, saying his attire violated regulations against wearing obvious religious symbols at the holy site. The Waqf officer warned police the tzitzit would cause a “disruption” if noticed by other Muslim visitors.
The attire in question is a four-cornered garment worn by Jewish men in order to fulfill the commandment in Deuteronomy to affix fringes to the corners of any four-cornered garment. Since modern men’s clothing does not usually qualify under this Jewish law, it is accepted practice to wear an additional garment, resembling a shawl or poncho, to which the fringes can be attached.
The boy, a resident of Beit El, was released unconditionally upon arrival at the nearby police station.
The third detainee visited the Temple Mount with his friend who is about to be married. He allegedly whispered the words of a Jewish song into the bridegroom’s ear, leading to his arrest. The song, traditionally associated with weddings for its reference to bridegrooms and brides celebrating together in Jerusalem, is taken from the book of Isaiah. According to The Jewish Press, civil rights NGO Honenu had gone to the police to try to secure the 35-year-old’s release before his friend’s wedding.
Following the three arrests, an Israeli police officer was attacked with a wooden beam by Arabs at the site. No arrests in the incident, which resulted in the officer sustaining minor injuries to his leg, were reported.
World-renowned Temple Mount activist and founder of the Temple Mount Heritage Foundation Rabbi Yehudah Glick lambasted the treatment of Jews at the hands of Israeli police.
“I strongly recommend that the Israeli policemen go for an ear examination. It seems that many of them suffer very severely from an ear illness called ‘selective hearing’,” he told Breaking Israel News. “They seem not to hear harassment, incitement, cursing of innocent Jews on the Temple Mount but at the same time they will never miss a Jew mumbling to himself a word of prayer. We must remember who is the real enemy here, who wants to kill and who supports life.”