Jerusalem Chief Rabbi Visits Mourning Tent Of Killed Autistic Palestinian Man

    Jerusalem Chief Rabbi Aryeh Stern, center, speaking to members of Iyad Halak’s family during a condolence call on June 2, 2020. (Courtesy: Jerusalem Municipality)

    JERUSALEM (JTA) — A Jerusalem chief rabbi visited the family of Iyad Halak, the autistic Palestinian man who was shot to death by Israeli Border Police, at their mourning tent in eastern Jerusalem.

    Aryeh Stern, the city’s Ashkenazi chief rabbi, also met local Muslim leaders at the tent on Tuesday evening.

    Halak, of eastern Jerusalem, was shot in the Old City of Jerusalem by officers who said they thought the cellphone in his hand was a gun. Israel has apologized for the killing.

    Stern, who was joined by Jerusalem Municipality officials, said he was coming with “a message of peace and reconciliation,” according to The Jerusalem Post. Halak’s father thanked him for the condolence visit.

    Public Security Minister Amir Ohana said he would investigate Halak’s death. He also said that police officers “are required to make fateful decisions in seconds in an area that has been inundated with terror attacks, and in which there is a constant danger to their lives,” The Times of Israel reported.

    Ohana reportedly canceled a visit to the family for Tuesday evening after Halak’s father posted a video on social media in which he said he did not want visits from any government officials.

    On Wednesday in the Knesset, Ohana called for police officers to be trained to recognize a person with a disability and said he would advance such a requirement.

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    1. A terrible incident. I really understand both sides as a father of an autistic young man.
      Autism seems to be a grouping of some not well understood syndromes. Many autistic people do not look any different than other people. Yet the security had no way to know this while they had to act.

    2. The trigger happy cops who shot and killed an autistic man, who was walking to a facility for the disabled, should be criminally charged; I hope that no whitewash or coverup occurs, in this case.

      • Avrum, I can’t tell you how impressed I am by your scholarly and distinguished statements; perhaps you should seek employment as a reporter with MSNBC, NBC, or CBS, as they could probably use your objective, non-biased reporting.

    3. zionist amalek murdered 6 million jews. now their sewage murdered an unfortunate arab. bibi wants to chip all jewish kids for the rottenschilds. BH everything evil is burning.

      • Wait a minute. The paid aliyah hustlers are saying that every Jew must move to Israel. Who are we to believe?


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