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Israel arrests four over video celebrating death of Palestinian toddler

Israeli media report that a soldier was among those arrested over video featuring calls for 'revenge' against Arabs
A still from the video that appeared to show revellers stabbing a picture of the dead toddler

Israeli police have arrested four Jewish men suspected of being among gun-waving extremists filmed celebrating the killing of a Palestinian toddler in a firebomb attack.

The four were shown in a wedding video, broadcast last week by an Israeli news channel, which spread online and drew strong condemnation from Israeli politicians including Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

Police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld told AFP on Tuesday that the four were scheduled to appear in front of a Jerusalem court" for a remand hearing.

He said the arrests were "in connection with the weapons that were at the wedding and other things".

Israeli public radio said among those arrested were the groom, a soldier who lent his assault rifle to another reveller and a former activist of the outlawed far-right Kach movement, who was allegedly shown brandishing a weapon and calling for revenge against Arabs.

The video showed wedding guests dancing with guns, knives and at least one unlit petrol bomb. It also showed the slashing of a picture of Ali Saad Dawabsha, an 18-month old killed with his parents in a firebombing attack on their home in the West Bank village of Duma on 31 July.

Israeli media reported that the groom had previously been questioned over acts of "Jewish terrorism" while other at the wedding were friends or relatives of suspects arrested over the July firebombing.

Netanyahu called the video "shocking" and said it showed "the true face of a group that constitutes a danger to Israeli society and to the security of Israel".

In recent weeks, Israel has arrested a number of people over the 31 July firebombing.

The attack killed Ali Saad, and his parents later died from severe burns. The couple's four-year-old son was the sole survivor from the immediate family.

A Star of David and the words "revenge" and "long live the Messiah" were spray-painted on a wall near the family's small house.

Palestinians have often highlighted the lack of progress in the Duma case as one of the causes of a wave of knife, gun and car-ramming attacks targeting Israelis that began on 1 October.

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