Groom from wedding that celebrated Palestinian deaths charged with animal abuse

(JTA) – The groom from the wedding where Jewish revelers were captured on video celebrating the deaths of members of a Palestinian family in a firebombing has been charged with animal abuse.

Yakir Eshbal, who was arrested and questioned after the wedding video was made public including about his involvement in the firebomb attack on the Dawabsheh family home in the West Bank village of Duma, which killed an 18-month-old baby and his parents, was indicted on Tuesday along with three friends.

The indictment filed in Jerusalem Magistrates Court accuses Eshbal and the other men of trying to hang a dog from his neck from a tree in an incident that was recorded on video. The incident came to light during the investigation into the Duma firebombing.

The wedding video shows friends of the suspected assailants in the July attack in Duma that killed three members of the Dawabshe family – a toddler and his parents – stabbing a photo of the family and waving knives, rifles, pistols and Molotov cocktails. The revelers also chant the words to a song that includes a verse from Judges 16:28, in which Samson says, “Let me with one blow get revenge on the Philistines for my two eyes.” The crowd substitutes “Palestinians” for Philistines.

Those shown in the video celebrating the deaths have been condemned from across Israel’s political and religious spectrum.

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