Violent Attack on Israel’s Eritrean Community Leaves Many Injured

More than 50 hooligan Eritreans arrested for violently attacking their countrymen, ambassador during a conference held in Kinneret

Ambassador Tesfamariam  Tekeste addressing the Eritrean community in Israel
Ambassador Tesfamariam Tekeste addressing the Eritrean community in Israel

By Maor Buchnik,

Israel’s Eritrean community had a rough day Wednesday after a peaceful conference held in the Kinneret ended in a violent brawl and a protest in the evening ended in arrests.

Some 50 Eritreans were arrested Saturday after they violently descended on a peaceful conference organized by their own community, wounding 12 and attacking the Eritrean ambassador to Israel.

The event was organized by the embassy and was attended by more than 500 Eritrean nationals who came from Beersheba, Tel Aviv and Kiryat Malachi. The event was without incident until Ambassador Tesfamariam Tekeste took the stage and a bus full of 50 rowdy ‘Eritreans’ arrived.

The new arrivals allegedly attacked participants and tried to attack the ambassador as well. At some point, the police were forced to fire into the air and after things calmed some 12 people were evacuated to the hospital and 50 were arrested.

According to Tiberius Police Commander Gadi Ron: “The Eritrean ambassador’s life was threatened. He was evacuated from the scene by the police and his personal bodyguards.”

“Those hurt suffered from head wounds and open gashes,” an official from Poriya Hospital in Tiberias said, adding that one would be forced to undergo a ligament surgery and another, suffering from internal head damage, would be transferred to the Rambam Medical Center in Haifa.

Outside of the emergency room of the Poriya Hospital Simon sat with two of his friends, all three were bleeding from their head. They received medical care at the hospital and were released but the police barred them from speaking with press. Not far from them was a man who was hit in the head with stone.

Neta Mor, who works in Kinneret, said that “suddenly a group of anti-government activist arrived at the conference and began to riot. Then a brawl erupted with people using sticks and stones to attack one another. There were families at the scene.”

The largely peaceful Eritrean community in Israel attending the community meeting
The largely peaceful Eritrean community in Israel attending the community meeting
After a bus full of hooligans arrive for the specific purpose disrupting and attacking the Eritrean community members in Israel, the brawl spills into the street.
After a bus full of hooligans arrive for the specific purpose disrupting and attacking the Eritrean community members in Israel, the brawl spills into the street.
One of the dozens of wounded Eritrean lies on the street
One of the dozens of wounded Eritrean lies on the street

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