Fire in Kindergarten in Alleged 'Price Tag' Attack

Bilingual kindergarten set alight, emblazoned with anti-Arab graffiti; attack evokes strong condemnations from leftists, Ministers, MKs.

Benny Moshe, | updated: 22:15

Site of arson attack
Site of arson attack
צילום: אריק אבולוף - כב"ה ירושלים

A fire broke out at a dual Arabic-Hebrew language kindergarten school building in Jerusalem's Pat Saturday night, in an apparent "price tag" attack in the capital. 

Firefighters managed to extinguish the blaze shortly after it was set alight, and no injuries were reported. The kindergarten is heavily damaged, however - and graffiti was discovered on the walls with phrases such as "Death to Arabs!," "no to coexistence," and "Kahane was right" (reference to R' Meir Kahane - ed.).

An investigation has been launched into the fire. 

Peace Now Chief Yariv Oppenheimer blamed the fire on the "extreme right" shortly after news of the fire was published, claiming that "the extreme right is encouraged by the government to burn up every good part that remains [in Israel]." 

Labor MK Itzik Shmuli, similarly, claimed that the apparent arson "is the result of the Likud's incitement policy, which pours petrol on the flames [of racism] instead of maintaining calm."

"A school was burned today," he added. "Who knows what else will burn after another week of incitement." 

Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat has also responded to the fire Saturday night, vowing to quash signs of unrest. 

"We will not allow pyromaniacs and violators of the public order to take law into their own hands and disrupt the routine of our lives," Barkat stated. "I spoke with the Police Commissioner [Yohanan Danino - ed.] and he stated that the investigation [into the incident] and the security of Jerusalem's children is top priority." 

Education Minister Rabbi Shai Piron also condemned the fie. 

"This is a violent, criminal, and despicable act that undermines the foundation of democracy," Prion stated. "The fact that it was an arson attack on an educational framework that advocates coexistence severely undermined the fabric of relations between Jews and Arabs." 

"This is more severe because the perpetrators chose to harm the soft underbelly of society: the kindergarten, in which young children learn," Piron continued. "I call on the Israel Police to act immediately and waste no time to bring the perpetrators of this vile act to justice."




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