Hevron Cemetery Desecrated Over Sabbath

Hevron’s ancient Jewish cemetery was vandalized over the Sabbath.

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Ezra HaLevi,

Hevron’s ancient Jewish cemetery was vandalized over the Sabbath.

The Menuchah Rachel Beit Midrash in the Chabad section of the cemetery was broken into and damaged. Gravestones were desecrated, mezuzahs (parchment posted on doorposts in accordance with Biblical command) ripped out of their posts and other holy articles destroyed.

Equipment and furniture were also stolen from the site. Hevron police have launched an investigation into the incident.

At the beginning of the civil year, three graves in the cemetery’s Sephardic section were desecrated – two gravestones removed and one doused with paint.

Hevron spokesman David Wilder told Arutz-7 that the most disturbing of all the targets damaged by the vandals was the grave of IDF soldier Elazar Leibovitch, who was murdered on the 17th of Av, 5762. The vandals damaged the military gravestone and then left the carcass of a turtle lying on it. Three other gravestones were also damaged.

“This is not the first time that Arabs have entered the cemetery and desecrated it,” Wilder said. “They steal whatever they are able to, cut through the fence surrounding it, and even steal the memorial windows.”

Wilder says that despite repeated urgent requests from the local community and religious council, the IDF refuses to guard the site. “For years we have been asking for protection for the cemetery, but the IDF says that there isn't the manpower for it,” Wilder says.

Hevron’s Jewish community is scheduled to meet to discuss its response to the ongoing desecration of Jewish graves in the city.