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Daily Israel Report

Vicious Anti-Semitic Attack on Jerusalem Light Rail

25-year-old woman struck in the head by Arab attackers in unprovoked assault; victim laments lack of security.
By Ari Soffer
First Publish: 1/8/2014, 10:45 PM

Jerusalem Light Rail
Jerusalem Light Rail
Flash 90

A Jewish woman was targeted in an unprovoked attack by Arab youths on Jerusalem's light rail Wednesday evening.

25-year-old Batya Cohen had got on at the Jerusalem suburb of Pisgat Ze'ev, and was on her way home as the train passed through the Arab neighborhood of Beit Hanina. At that point, she told Arutz Sheva, two Arab youths got on and began "messing around".

She said she was speaking on her phone at the back of the carriage, which was largely empty at the time when, as the train reached the next stop in the Arab neighborhood of Shuafat "one of them gave me a really hard punch to the back of my head."

Neither of them had said anything to her beforehand, and Batya said she felt she was targeted simply for being Jewish.

She travels the line regularly, and lamented the lack of security, saying she has been harassed by Arab passengers on previous occasions as well - although none of the incidents were as severe.

"One time for example I was resting with my head against the window, and an Arab guy just whacked the glass near my head" for no reason, she recalled.

Her two attackers made a quick escape, when "literally a second later" a security guard alighted. But when Batya approached him he told her there was nothing he could do as the attackers had already left the scene, leaving her "amazed" at the lack of security.

"Jews should not be afraid, should not feel insecure in this country," she said. "Why can't we walk around without fear?"

When asked if she was scared at the time, she explained that "it all happened so quickly I didn't really have time to be scared", but the vicious attack left her badly shaken and with head-pains.

As of talking to Arutz Sheva, she had been waiting at the police station for nearly an hour, without being seen.

No one at the light rail was immediately available for comment.