An old residential building in the northern part of the Muslem Quarter in Jerusalem's Old City is now under Jewish ownership, following its purchase facilitated by the Ateret Cohanim association.
The purchase is billed as a traditional "true Zionist response" to the terrorist murders of Rabbi Nechemiah Lavi and Aharon Bennet in the vicinity of the building last year.
In a statement released today, Ateret Cohanim announced that as a result of the purchase, "more Jewish families and Yeshiva students will move into the old Jewish Quarter (Moslem Quarter) of the Old City." No date has yet been set for the move, nor has the building been given a name.
The building will house three or four Jewish families, as well as a number of Yeshiva students. Over 1,000 Jews, including many Yeshiva students, currently populate what is now known as the Moslem Quarter. Some 4,000 Jews live in the Jewish Quarter.
This most recent acquisition, which as passed all the legal requirements, is situated not far from Flowers Gate, in the northern part of the Old City. It originally belonged to Jews, but was seized by Arab settlers during the 1930s.
Rabbi Nechemiah Lavi and Aharon Bennett were murdered nearby this past October. "Arab incitement, terror and hatred, only increases Jewish resolve," Ateret Cohanim announced, "and now yet another building is in Jewish hands in the Old City."
"Arab terror and ongoing Arab incitement and violence aims to drive Jews out of Jerusalem," Ateret Cohanim declared, "to keep Jews away not only from the Temple Mount, but also from the Western Wall and the entire Old City. It also intends to weaken the resolve of the Jewish people, especially of the families and students in and around the Old City. However, the Arab are mistaken on all fronts. We will not be driven out of our Jerusalem, and their acts of violence have only strengthened our resolve, strength of conviction, faith and fortitude."
On Saturday evening, October 3, 2015, Rabbi Lavi heard from his apartment the screams of Aharon Bennett and his wife and baby as Arab terrorists attacked them. He ran down to help, and was himself stabbed to death by the same terrorists, as was Aharon Bennett. Rabbi Lavi, an IDF reserve officer and father of seven, was armed with a gun, but the terrorist stabbed him from behind and seized his weapon.