Two Arab youths from Tarshiha, part of the mixed Jewish-Arab city of Maalot-Tarshiha in the Galilee, have been arrested for plotting to throw firebombs at Israeli vehicles.
Their arrest followed by just a few hours a speech by Maalot Mayor Shlomo Buchbut in which he said that he still believes in Jewish-Arab co-existence in Israel.
The arrestees, aged 15 and 16, told their investigators that they learned how to fashion Molotov cocktails via the internet. Their remand has been extended for a week.
“Despite the events of the last two weeks and the tensions with the Arab public,” Buchbut said, “we cannot just slam the door. Not all Israeli-Arabs are radicals; very many of them are in favor of living together.” He spoke at the 4th Annual Conference for the Advancement of Co-Existence. He noted that though Arab Knesset Members were not present, “several Arab mayors have arrived. Apparently the Arab MKs don’t want to hear the truth.”
Judge Rachaim Tzemach, who remanded the two youths in the Acco Magistrates Court, said, “This is a particularly serious incident, in which a young Israeli citizen, a minor, decides to harm national and public security, without noting the dangerous ramifications of this act vis-à-vis those who use the highway, and vis-à-vis the public to which he belongs.”