Palestinian vandals ripped off a Mezuzah, a Jewish artifact, which was affixed to the main entrance at the Cave of the Patriarchs in Hebron on Friday, while the holy site was open solely for Muslims in honor of the Muslim month of Ramadan.
Vandals also broke into a gardening shed and stole plants worth thousands of Shekels.
A spokesman for the holy site described the Mezuzah as a large silver religious artifact, which has gone missing.
A Mezuzah is a casing affixed to door post which contains verses from the Torah specially written on parchment. The verses contain the foundations of the Jewish faith.
The IDF and Border Police, which are usually on site to secure the area, were not present at the time because of the Muslim festivities. The Muslim Waqf are entrusted with maintaining order at the site, and apparently have failed to do so.
Several such incidents have occurred in the past, as Muslims abused Israel’s goodwill and exploited the holiday time to desecrate Jewish artifacts.
The Cave of the Patriarchs is shared year-round by both Jews and Muslims who use different halls, while on certain Jewish or Muslim holidays it is shut off to members of the opposite religion.
By: Max Gelber, United with Israel