Chief Rabbi Approves Burial of Arab Man Who Was Refused Muslim Burial

Ala'a Qarash was suspected of selling property to Jews

Ala’a Qarash was a resident of Jerusalem who was tragically killed in a road accident on highway 90 near the Dead Sea.

When his body was brought to al-Aqsa mosque for pre-burial prayers, eyewitnesses said a fist-fight broke out at the entrance to the Temple Mount between his bereaved family and a group of people who attempted to stop the procession.

He was ultimately refused a burial in any Muslim cemetery by Jerusalem’s Mufti Ekrima Sa’id Sabri.

His crime that led to this happening? Ala’a’s Qarash was suspected of doing, what the Palestinian Authority considers the highest act of evil. Selling land to a Jew.  A “crime” straight out of the Nuremberg Laws of 1935.

In fact, just like the Nuremberg Laws, this Palestinian law also originates in 1935 when Jerusalem’s Mufti and Hitler confidant Haj Amin al-Husseini ruled that “anyone who sells a house or land to Jews will not receive Muslim burial.”

When Jerusalem’s Chief Rabbi Aryeh Stern saw the injustice done to this man’s dignity after dying so tragically, he made an rare ruling allowing him to be buried in the Jewish cemetery at Har HaMenuchot.

The blatantly antisemitic and discriminatory Palestinian law forbidding land sale to Jews is, in fact, much more serious than losing ones right to a Muslim burial. It carries the death penalty. For example, in 2009, a Palestinian man was sentenced to death by hanging.

On Qarash’s situation, Rabbi Stern explained, “Since the Muslims themselves are unwilling to bury him, we must do something and right this wrong done to a man disgraced simply for his willingness to sell land to Jews. We must give very positive treatment to righteous gentiles, and in this case this is someone who showed good will and was even willing to take a risk for the Jewish settlement. We will do everything to bring Ala’a Qarash to a proper burial, and we will not allow disrespect of a man, be him Arab or Jewish.”


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