Four arrested in Jerusalem stoning attack that injured toddler
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Four arrested in Jerusalem stoning attack that injured toddler

Court extends remand of residents of Arab neighborhood of Sur Baher suspected of injuring 2-year-old Avigail Ben Zion

Adiv Sterman is a breaking news editor at The Times of Israel.

The car in which Avigail Ben Zion, 2, was injured by a stone near her home in Armon Hanatziv, Jerusalem, November 28, 2013. (Photo credit: Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)
The car in which Avigail Ben Zion, 2, was injured by a stone near her home in Armon Hanatziv, Jerusalem, November 28, 2013. (Photo credit: Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)

Four people were arrested overnight Thursday-Friday in connection with an attack Thursday evening that seriously injured a two-year-old Israeli girl, the Israel Police announced early Friday.

The suspects, Arab men aged 15 to 20, were brought for a remand extension before the Jerusalem District Court Friday morning, police said. The court extended their remand until Monday.

The four, residents of the Arab neighborhood of Sur Baher, are suspected of hurling rocks at the vehicle in which two-year-old Avigail Ben Zion was traveling with her parents in Armon Hanatziv, a predominantly Jewish Jerusalem neighborhood just over the Green Line.

Ben Zion, whose family were returning from a day out at the Jerusalem Biblical Zoo, sustained a moderate head wound from the incident. Paramedics rushed her to Hadassah Hospital in the capital’s Ein Kerem neighborhood, where doctors said she was in stable condition.

Two of the suspects alleged to have thrown stones at the car that left 2-year-old Avigail Ben Zion moderately wounded are escorted by police in the Magistrate's Court in Jerusalem, November 29, 2013. (Photo credit: Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)
Two of the suspects alleged to have thrown stones at the car that left 2-year-old Avigail Ben Zion moderately wounded are escorted by police in the Magistrate’s Court in Jerusalem, November 29, 2013. (Photo credit: Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)

Doctors later said that the girl suffered no internal injuries and her health was improving. Her father Assaf said Friday he had been told she would make a full recovery.

An initial report on Channel 2 said that the stone may have been thrown from the adjacent Arab neighborhood of Sur Baher.

The Armon Hanatziv neighborhood of Jerusalem (photo credit: Nati Shohat/Flash90)
The Armon Hanatziv neighborhood of Jerusalem (photo credit: Nati Shohat/Flash90)

Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat called on authorities to crack down on a recent wave of stone-throwing attacks in the city. “It’s about time we start treating a stone as a weapon,” he told Israel’s Channel 10 TV.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu wished Ben Zion a speedy recovery. “We will find these criminals and bring them to justice,” he said earlier.

The incident came amid a surge in the number and severity of violent attacks against Israelis on both sides of the Green Line in recent months.

Earlier in November, a couple driving along a road in the West Bank near the settlement of Tekoa were wounded, and their car was destroyed, in a Molotov-cocktail attack.

In mid-November, a Palestinian teenager stabbed 19-year-old soldier Eden Atias multiple times in the neck, killing him as he slept in the adjacent seat on a bus at the central bus station in Afula.

The assailant, 16-year-old Hussein Rawarda, had entered Israel illegally in search of work and apparently decided to carry out the deadly attack after failing to be hired by an Israeli employer.

Shortly before the stabbing, former Shin Bet chief Yuval Diskin said the Palestinians were ripe for a “Third Intifada.” However, Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon said that recent attacks were isolated incidents, insisting that “there is no sign of a popular uprising.”

In March, three-year-old Adele Bitton was critically injured when rocks were thrown at her mother’s car near the settlement of Ariel, causing a major accident. She was released from a Ra’anana hospital in July, after nearly two-and-a-half months of treatment in the facility’s intensive care unit.

Times of Israel Staff contributed to this report.

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