A leader of Israel’s Christian minority has been stabbed to death in Tel Aviv’s district of Jaffa during a parade marking the birthday of Jesus Christ.
An unidentified assailant, dressed as Santa Claus, stabbed Gabi Kadees in the back during the Friday Orthodox Christmas procession and escaped the scene, senior Greek Orthodox cleric Atallah Hanna said.
Last month, Kadees had won a third term to lead Jaffa’s Greek Orthodox community in a controversial election.
Six suspects have been arrested and will be brought before a magistrate, according to police.
Israeli police spokeswoman Luba Samri said on Saturday that police have set up a special unit to conduct a thorough investigation into the murder.
“We are following all leads, including rumors of a dispute within the Greek Orthodox community in Jaffa over the victim’s recent re-election as leader of the Jaffa Orthodox Church Association,” she said.
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