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Beating of Palestinian man touches off riots in Acre

Oct. 9, 2008 12:59 P.M. (Updated: Oct. 9, 2008 12:59 P.M.)
Bethlehem - Ma'an/Agencies - Riots took place in the Israeli town of Acre on Thursday morning after Jewish youths reportedly beat a Palestinian resident on the Jewish holy day of Yom Kippur.

Young Israeli Jews reportedly assaulted the Palestinian man after he drove into the eastern, predominantly Jewish section of the city just after midnight. The Israeli newspaper Haaretz reported that the man claimed to be driving home.

It also reported that hundreds of Jewish Israelis rioted, shouting "death to Arabs" over the crowds.

Following the assault, Palestinian youths reportedly arrived at the scene, touching off riots involving both Arabs and Jews. Dozens of cars and shops were damaged.

Police have arrested a number of suspected rioters and say they plan to detain more. The Acre police chief cited the involvement of 'Jewish and Arab gangs' in the riots.

The holiest day of the year on the Jewish calendar, Yom Kippur is a Day of Atonement during which Jews fast, attend religious services, and refrain from working.

Jewish youths at the scene of Thursday's assault claimed the Palestinian man was "making excessive noise."
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