3 municipal workers from East Jerusalem attacked in ultra-Orthodox neighborhood
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3 municipal workers from East Jerusalem attacked in ultra-Orthodox neighborhood

Police detain Haredi suspects over assault on sanitation workers that left one man requiring stitches to his head, reportedly for knife wound

Stuart Winer is a breaking news editor at The Times of Israel.

Illustrative: Ultra-OrthodoxJewish men walk in the Shmuel Hanavi  neighborhood in Jerusalem, June 6 2011. (Gili Yaari / Flash 90)
Illustrative: Ultra-OrthodoxJewish men walk in the Shmuel Hanavi neighborhood in Jerusalem, June 6 2011. (Gili Yaari / Flash 90)

Three Jerusalem municipal sanitation workers were attacked Sunday in the capital’s Shmuel Hanavi neighborhood, reportedly by ultra-Orthodox Jews.

One of the workers was injured in his head and required stitches for a knife wound, Hebrew media reported.

Israel Police said they arrested a man on suspicion of being involved in the incident, which happened on Eretz Hefetz Street in the north-central neighborhood, and detained two others for questioning.

“From an initial investigation it appears that three suspects allegedly attacked three municipal workers and one of them was injured in the upper body and required medical treatment,” police said in a statement. “An investigation was opened.”

Hebrew media reports said the suspects are ultra-Orthodox.

The three municipal workers were all Palestinian residents of the Shuafat refugee camp in East Jerusalem, reports said.

Jerusalem Mayor Moshe Lion at the 17th annual Jerusalem Conference of the ‘Besheva’ group, on February 25, 2020. (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)

Jerusalem Mayor Moshe Lion said in a statement, “I condemn all violent behavior of any kind, against any community, and certainly against Jerusalem municipality workers who are faithfully doing their work on behalf of the city and its residents.”

He called on police “to act with zero restraint against any manifestations of violence.”

The incident came after on Saturday a vehicle carrying medics and municipal inspectors was pelted with rocks and other objects in the Mea Shearim ultra-Orthodox neighborhood of the capital while traveling to conduct a coronavirus test. A volunteer paramedic received a head injury in the attack and required hospitalization, according to the Magen David Adom ambulance service.

The rear window of the Jerusalem municipality vehicle, which was being used by Magen David Adom to collect a sample from a man suspected of having the virus, was smashed by the stones and part of the windshield was shattered. There were no reports of arrests in that incident.

The damaged rear window of a Jerusalem municipality vehicle that had stones thrown at it, April 4, 2020 (Magen David Adom)

Earlier Saturday, police arrested 10 people in Mea Shearim accused of assaulting officers and interfering with their efforts to enforce restrictions.

The neighborhood is home to numerous extremist ultra-Orthodox groups and has been the scene of multiple clashes between residents and police enforcing Health Ministry directives against the virus. A Magen David Adom team was also attacked with rocks on Monday while performing a coronavirus test in Mea Shearim.

Times of Israel staff contributed to this report.

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