Hundreds of Jews Visit Yericho Sites

Jews pray at the Old Synagogue in Yericho, in 2005. (Nati Shohat/Flash 90)

Accompanied by IDF soldiers, nearly 1,000 people on Monday entered Yericho to visit and daven at several important Jewish sites that are generally off limit to Jews. The sites include the Na’aran Synagogue, the Shalom al Yisrael Synagogue, and the Hashomana’i Winter Palaces. All three sites are located in Palestinian Authority-controlled areas, and Jews can enter only under special circumstances. The visit took place on 10 Nissan, the day that Bnei Yisrael crossed the Jordan River to enter Eretz Yisrael.

IDF soldiers overnight Monday seized weapons that were to be used in terror attacks. Soldiers, working with police, discovered weapons in several villages in the Binyamin region. Among the weapons was an M-16 rifle. The owner of the house was arrested and questioned on what the weapons were doing there.

In a statement, the army said that such weapons were used in terror attacks as well as for criminal activity, and that security forces were determined to seize all weapons that were being held illegally by all people, in order to better protect all Israelis and residents of Palestinian Authority-controlled areas, who are also under threat by terrorists and criminals.

Overnight Monday, security officials said they arrested eight wanted security suspects in other areas 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.