Some 2,000 Jews on Wednesday night davened at Kever Yosef in Shechem, in honor of what is traditionally considered the yahrtzeit of Yosef Hatzaddik. Hundreds of IDF troops were stationed in the area. Arabs rioted and threw rocks and firebombs at soldiers, who responded with anti-riot measures. There were no Israeli injuries.
Commenting on the event, Shomron Council head Yossi Dagan said that “we have the right as a nation to remember our leaders and mark their passing, also thousands of years after their petirah. This is our connection to places like this. This is our strength as a nation. We look forward to the day when we can stand with our backs straight and enter sites like this during broad daylight and without a military escort that must fight back the rioters.”
Earlier this week, 23 Israelis were arrested for attempting to reach Kever Yosef without the permission of the IDF, a situation that in the past has led to violence and bloodshed against Israelis, the IDF said. The detainees were arrested Motzoei Shabbos and released later Sunday.
Overnight Wednesday, security officials said they had arrested six wanted security suspects in Yehudah and Shomron. The suspects were wanted for participating in rioting and throwing stones and firebombs that endangered Israeli civilians and IDF soldiers. Several of the suspects were also charged with belonging to Hamas. All were being questioned on their activities by security forces.