Israel Police on Monday arrested an Israeli-Arab man from eastern Jerusalem who held his wedding celebrations in the middle of the Begin Highway in Jerusalem and blocked traffic.
The incident took place three months ago but only garnered attention this week after footage of the celebrations obtained by Im Tirtzu’s Arab Desk was published on social media.
— תנועת אם תרצו (@ImTirtzu) November 28, 2021
Im Tirtzu tagged Israel Police in the video, which was viewed 110,000 times on the group’s Facebook and Twitter pages, and called on the police to act.
In response to the social media uproar, the police arrested the groom and issued a statement saying: “Following online publications of a video that shows cars wildly blocking a Jerusalem road while severely disrupting traffic, we wish to clarify that the incident occurred some three months ago, and that, as a result, summonses were given to nine drivers who were present and blocked traffic. In addition to traffic enforcement, the Israel Police is examining taking criminal action against the host of the event.”
The police further stated: “The host of the event through whom the offense was committed, who was present on the scene, was arrested on suspicion of violating public order and brought to the police station for interrogation.”
Responding to the arrest, Im Tirtzu’s Arab Desk welcomed the move but said it was not enough.
“It’s troubling that three months have passed since the outrageous scene in which a major Jerusalem highway was wildly blocked by Arab residents, and only now the Israel Police is investigating the matter. If we hadn’t publicized the video, the incident would have been ignored. Israel is not the Wild West. The police have our support and need to send a clear message that such criminality will not be tolerated.”