Suspected Palestinian attackers set fire to Torah scrolls in an outpost next to the Karmei Tzur settlement in the West Bank overnight Friday-Saturday. There were no injuries in the incident, but the scrolls were badly damaged.
The scrolls were inside a tent at the Givat Shorek outpost, which residents said had been in use as a synagogue, the Ynet news website reported. According to the settlers, the tent had also been used as a gathering place for the children of the area.
According to Karmei Tzur residents, the suspected arsonists piled up the Torah scrolls and set them alight.
Judea and Samaria police said that the footprints of the suspects were found leading to a Palestinian village near the town of Halhul, Ynet said.
The tent, which was unmanned at the time, overlooks the site where the bodies of three Israeli teens were found after they had been abducted and murdered by terrorists in June 2014.
“It is hard to accept the fact that in the heart of the country, we are experiencing events reminiscent of the darkest history of all, and we cannot forget that it is less than one hundred meters from [Givat Sorek] to residents’ homes,” one of the settlers said, according to Ynet.
Education Minister Naftali Bennett, head of the Orthodox-nationalist Jewish Home party, said the pictures of the burned scrolls “recall the darkest days of our history.”
He urged security forces to quickly catch “the terrorists who did this.” Bennett said “a red line has been crossed… and we will not allow this to go unpunished.”