IDF Soldiers, Israeli Civilians Work Overnight to Clean and Renovate Joseph’s Tomb
JNS.org – The Jewish holy site of Joseph’s Tomb was restored overnight on Tuesday following Palestinian riots last month that damaged the site.
Overnight, around 50 civilian workers came to the site under escort by the Israel Defense Forces to make the necessary repairs. The Shomron Regional Council paid approximately NIS 100,000 ($25,830) for repairs to the tomb.
Last month, Joseph’s Tomb, which is located near Nablus in the West Bank, was set ablaze by more than 100 Palestinian rioters as part of a “Day of Rage” across the West Bank and eastern Jerusalem. They threw a firebomb inside the premises, which set part of the site on fire. Rioters also threw rocks at Israeli troops. Multiple fires caused by the rioting were eventually put out by Palestinian security forces who control the site.
“The sovereign over Joseph’s Tomb is the Jewish people, and so the Jewish people have restored this place of rest of one of its ancestors,” said Davidi Ben Tzion, deputy chairman of the Shomron Regional Council.
According to the Book of Joshua, Joseph was buried outside of the city of Shechem, which is modern-day Nablus. As part of the 1993 Oslo Accords, Jewish prayer is limited at the site to only once a month during the middle of the night, when the IDF secures access to the tomb. But Jewish worshippers often sneak into the site to pray.