Afula Israel news photo: Flash 90

A hail of stones descended on the vehicles of Arab youths who had come to party in the Jewish city of Afula on Tisha B'Av.

The Arabs entered Afula late Saturday night, well into the Tisha B'Av fast, and fled when local Jews pelted them with rocks, reports Hakol Hayehudi website.

Hakol Hayehudi adds that the confrontation "occurred against a background of incessant sexual harassment of Jewish girls by Arabs who come to Afula to party."

A growing number of Arabs from nearby villages frequent Afula during the nights, cause disturbances and harass Jewish girls, the website added. In addition, several Arab families have moved into the town in recent years.

"The Arabs come here in shiny cars, put on loud music and chat up Jewish girls," a resident said.

Afula's Deputy Mayor, Boris Yudis, said eight months ago that "The phenomenon of girls aged 12 and 13 who are in Arab villages breaks my heart, but unfortunately my hands are tied. Mothers come to me and cry that their 12 and 13 year olds have moved into minority villages; this is a painful thing that wounds my heart."

There have been several altercations between Jews and Arabs in Afula in recent years, including a large scale melee two years ago. In that incident, several Arab cars were pelted with stones and an Arab was stabbed.