Israeli police arrest 9 in connection with mosque torching last month in West Bank

By Amy Teibel, AP
Monday, January 18, 2010

Israeli police arrest 9 in West Bank mosque blaze

JERUSALEM — Israeli police say they’ve arrested nine people at a radical Jewish settlement in connection with the torching last month of a West Bank mosque.

The attackers burned prayer carpets and a book stand with Muslim holy texts, and spray-painted Hebrew graffiti on the floor of the mosque in the December 11 attack.

Authorities suspect the fire was set by Jewish extremists outraged by a government-ordered slowdown in West Bank settlement construction. Some extremists take out their anger on Palestinians in a practice known as “price tag.”

A teen was briefly detained last month in connection with the torching.

Police officials on Monday gave no further details about the nine arrested. They spoke on condition of anonymity because they are not authorized to discuss the case.

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