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Afula mayor attends demonstration against sale of home to Arab family


Deputy mayor and council members join protest ‘to ensure the city preserves its Jewish character’; protesters wave Israeli flags, banners from extremist Lehava group

an Afula street

Times of Israel reports, “The mayor and deputy mayor of the northern city of Afula on Saturday evening joined tens of protesters, including city council members, to demonstrate against the sale of a home to an Arab family. Council member Itai Cohen said the municipality would continue to “ensure that Afula preserves its Jewish character.”

““Anyone looking for a mixed city — Afula is not the address,” Cohen told Army Radio on Sunday morning. “We are a right-wing place with Jewish characteristics.” Protesters waved Israeli flags and banners from the right-wing extremist Lehava organization. Lehava opposes intermarriage and the assimilation of Jews as well as LGBT rights, and tries to stifle public activity by non-Jews in Israel. Lawmakers across the political spectrum have tried to designate it as a terrorist group.”

“The protest was organized via a Facebook page called “Otzma Yehudit Afula,” where organizers wrote: “Our city is sold, we must not give it a hand and we must not remain silent.” Otzma Yehudit (Jewish Power) is a Kahanist movement that is now a part of the Union of Right-Wing Parties under a merger deal brokered by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu prior to the April elections. It is not known if the Facebook page is a formal chapter of the party…

“Last year Deputy Mayor Shlomo Malihi and Elkabetz joined approximately 150 protesters who demonstrated against the sale of a home in the city to an Arab family. Protesters carried banners slamming the sale and the homeowners who sold their house to Arabs, one of which read: “Traitors against the Jews will get no rest,” Haaretz reported. In 2016, the Nazareth District Court revoked tenders won by dozens of Arab Israeli families to build homes in Afula, months after a spate of racially charged protests rocked the northern city.” (more…)

 

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