Photo Credit: Umm el Fahm social media
Umm al-Fahm municipal post offering condolences to the terrorist families. March 21, 2022

A stir was caused in Israel on Thursday afternoon as the official Facebook page of the Israeli Arab city Umm al-Fahm posted a message of condolences to the families of the two terrorists who Sunday night murdered 2 Israeli police officers in a terrorist attack in Hadera.

The two terrorists – who were killed by Israeli security forces during the attack – Ayman and Ibrahim Ighbariah, were Israeli Arabs from the city of Umm al-Fahm.

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The Mayor of Umm al-Fahm, Dr. Samir Sobhi Mahamed, has repudiated the Facebook post which has since been deleted.

The post (pictured above) read in Arabic:

Obligatory Condolences:
On my own behalf and on behalf of the members and employees of the municipality of Uhm Al Fahm we extend our sincere condolences and sympathies [to the terrorists’ families].
Our hearts go out to our people in the [Ighbariah ] family.
May God have mercy on them [the terrorists] and forgive them and inspire their families.

In response, Israel’s Minister of the Interior, Ayelet Shaked, instructed that her ministry ask the mayor of Umm al-Fahm to remove the post, and he did so.

“It is inconceivable that a municipality in the State of Israel would console families of terrorists. This is a serious and shameful post and it is good that it has been deleted,” read a statement from Shaked’s office. “The Interior Minister will continue to show zero tolerance for supporting terrorism on social networks and in general.”

Mayor Sobhi Mahamed later issued an apology over the post and denied that he had anything to do with its writing.

“The post went up on the Facebook page without my permission,” he told Israel’s Channel 12 News, “and was not my personal opinion, this is a serious mistake by the [city] spokesperson.”

The Mayor added that he instructed that the post be removed immediately and said that the matter is now being examined “by the relevant authorities.”

“We renounce this publication which does not represent Umm al-Fahm and its municipality,” he declared.

Update #1: In an unexpected turn of events, the mayor said in an interview on Kan 11 that he takes responsibility for the post and plans to resign.

Update #2: The mayor clarified his statement. He doesn’t intend to resign. Only if he is required to resign, will he resign.

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