Thousands protest across Israel after girl, 16, was 'gang-raped by 30 men’ in a hotel as teenager claims one ‘offered to send her videos of her ordeal’

The alleged gang-rape of a 16-year-old girl by some 30 men in the Red Sea resort of Eilat has sparked outrage in Israel and protests across the country.
Protesters gathered in several cities after media reports described how men in their 20s queued outside a hotel bedroom where the minor was, awaiting their turn to take advantage of her intoxicated state. 
Two suspects have been arrested according to the police after allegedly threatening to send the girl video of her ordeal. 
The girl, who spoke of how she is encouraged by the support she has received from the public, had first reported the alleged crime to police in Eilat last week but the case had previously gone largely unnoticed.
As more information came to light, protests in the big cities of Tel Aviv and Jerusalem on Thursday evening prompted Israel's leaders - including the President and Prime Minister - to speak out against crimes against women.
'It's shocking - there's no other word for it,' said Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, calling for all the suspects to be put on trial. 'It's not only a crime against a young girl, it's a crime against humanity itself that deserves condemnation from all of us.'

Protestors have taken to the streets in cities across Israel to express their outrage at the news that a 16-year-old girl was allegedly gang raped by up to 30 men who queued outside a hotel room, waiting their turn. Pictured: Protestors gather in Tel Aviv's Habima Square
The girl told police investigators that one of the suspects in the case had texted her saying that he had video footage of the alleged attacks. Two suspects have since been arrested, but the videos have reportedly been deleted. Pictured: Someone holds up a sign that reads '30 men queued to rape a girl' in Tel Aviv's Habima Square
The girl told police investigators that one of the suspects in the case had texted her saying that he had video footage of the alleged attacks. Two suspects have since been arrested, but the videos have reportedly been deleted. Pictured: Someone holds up a sign that reads '30 men queued to rape a girl' in Tel Aviv's Habima Square
The girl, who spoke of how she is encouraged by the support she has received from the public, had first reported the alleged crime to police in Eilat last week but the case had previously gone largely unnoticed.
However, in addition to those supporting her, the girl said she had also received abuse online. 'I feel that there are a lot of people behind me and this really strengthens me,' she said, but added 'No one knows what I went through, so how can you pass judgement and ask me questions?' according to Channel 13.
President Reuven Rivlin wrote an open letter to Israel's youth.'Sexual assault, rape, sexual exploitation, sexual violence - these are some of the stains that cannot be deleted,' he said. 'These are cases of unforgivable loss of boundaries, and they destroy us as a society. As humans.'
Netanyahu's coalition partner and defence minister Benny Gantz asked: 'What is a man who is standing on a crowded line with dozens of others, on the way to a room where a young, disoriented girl is lying down, trying to prove?
'The police investigation is still underway, but it's important that I convey a message to those who participated or bore witness to this case or others: The only thing you've proven is what depravity of your soul and morality you are capable of.'   
Thousands of Israelis took to the streets to protest nationwide - with hundreds gathering in Tel Aviv's Habima Square joined by people in over 30 other areas across Israel to show their support for the girl. 


Over 30 areas of Israel, including Tel Aviv's Habima Square (pictured) saw people take to the streets to show their support for the girl, with many holding signs saying 'we believe you'. Similar signs were held up last year after a British girl alleged she was gang raped in Cyprus by a group young Israeli men, but was instead charged with lying
Over 30 areas of Israel, including Tel Aviv's Habima Square (pictured) saw people take to the streets to show their support for the girl, with many holding signs saying 'we believe you'. Similar signs were held up last year after a British girl alleged she was gang raped in Cyprus by a group young Israeli men, but was instead charged with lying
Pictured: A woman in Tel Aviv's Habima Square holds a sign that says 'Don't get raped', with crosses through the 'Get' and the 'D' to change the sign to be 'don't rape', targeting the act of victim blaming. One in five woman is Isreal have been raped in their lifetime, according to woman's rights group HaStickeriot
Pictured: A woman in Tel Aviv's Habima Square holds a sign that says 'Don't get raped', with crosses through the 'Get' and the 'D' to change the sign to be 'don't rape', targeting the act of victim blaming. One in five woman is Isreal have been raped in their lifetime, according to woman's rights group HaStickeriot
The protesters united under the banner 'we won't be silent anymore', with around 1,000 in the capital - where protesters briefly blocked traffic - 150 in Jeruselam, and more in Givatayim, Haifa and elsewhere.
Ilana Weizman of women's rights group HaStickeriot said one in five Israeli women was raped during her lifetime with 260 cases reported every day.
'We must educate our boys on the issue of consent ... from a very young age,' she said.
Many protesters referred to a case last year, when a 19-year-old British woman claimed she had been gang-raped by 12 Israeli males, aged 15 to 18, at a hotel in Cyprus. All 12 were initially arrested but released shortly after.
She was later found guilty of lying about being gang-raped and given a four-month suspended sentence, but the case was condemned by women's rights groups and the woman's lawyer said she was appealing against her conviction. 
The protest organisers said on Thursday: 'This case does not stand alone and is a direct continuation of the way in which the "youths" from Ayia Napa were received and a direct continuation of the public discourse surrounding the soccer players affair.'
According to an annual survey released last year, nine out of 10 rape cases in Israel are closed by prosecutors without any charges. Pictured: A woman holds a sign on Thursday evening at Habima Square as thousands take to the streets of Israel in protest
Protesters united under the banner 'we won't be silent anymore', with others holding signs saying 'you are not alone'. Pictured: Protesters on Thursday evening at Habima Square
Protesters united under the banner 'we won't be silent anymore', with others holding signs saying 'you are not alone'. Pictured: Protesters on Thursday evening at Habima Square
Two people have been arrested in relation to the case in Israel so far. Pictured: A protester wearing a mask on Thursday evening at Tel Aviv's Habima Square
Two people have been arrested in relation to the case in Israel so far. Pictured: A protester wearing a mask on Thursday evening at Tel Aviv's Habima Square
In the latest case, one suspect told investigators that a large group of men had sex with the girl but claimed that it was consensual, according to the Times of Israel, while Israeli newspaper Haaretz. made the claim that some of the men allegedly filmed the attacks on their phones.
The first suspect was reportedly arrested after messages emerged showing that there was video footage of the alleged rape.  
Police say the girl was not a guest at the hotel, but had gone to the bathroom after drinking there with some of her friends. She was then allegedly taken to one of the hotel rooms and raped by the group of men, who did not all know each other. 
One suspect claimed that the men 'lined up' outside the girl's room before going inside to assault her. 
Another of the alleged attackers was said to have entered the girl's room under the pretence of being a medic who wanted to help, and then 'took advantage of her and slept with her when she was out of control', a friend of the girl told Israeli television. 
Authorities are now awaiting the results of a medical examination, while one man has been ordered to stay in custody by a magistrates court. 
Local media said the suspect was a 27-year-old from northern Israel, while a second suspect, also 27, was arrested this morning. 
'At the moment we have two suspects in our hands, but it's still the beginning of a complex investigation,' An official involved in the investigation told Channel 12.
'We have an indication that there were several people in the same room. We do not know at this time what their exact number is. We also do not know at this stage what everyone present did there.' 
Police have formed a special team to investigate the alleged gang rape.
Pictured: A view of the northern beach of Eilat - a famous resort and recreation city in Israel, where the alleged gang rape too place
Pictured: A view of the northern beach of Eilat - a famous resort and recreation city in Israel, where the alleged gang rape too place
But the owner of the Red Sea Hotel where the alleged attack took place - Pnina Maman - said there was no evidence of a large gathering, telling Channel 12 news that she has given all CCTV footage to the police, noting that it does not show any groups of 30 people.
Telling the news network that she had children of her own, and sympathy for the girl, she also complained about people 'shaming' the hotel, and that she herself had received rape threats in the wake of the reports.  
'We are a hotel, not an educational institution. I'm not guilty of what happened. There were never 30 people in the hallways. We checked all the cameras. There was no gathering. This could have happened, unfortunately, in any hotel,' she said. 
'We have no way of knowing what happens inside the rooms,' Maman added. 
Earlier on Tuursday, an officer involved in the case told Walla news: 'It's not possible that there was massive drinking of alcohol, and men going up and coming down in groups — and that [at the same time,] no one in the hotel's management or security paid any attention.'
One of the arrested suspects has said that while more than 30 men had sex with the girl, the footage from security cameras would prove that it was not done under duress - and that the men stood at the door waiting their turn while the girl, who he says was drunk, called for them to come in. 
The other suspect has denied involvement, according to Channel 12 news. 
The first suspect was arrested after text messages were discovered between him and the girl revealed there was video evidence of the alleged assault. However, he has denied messaging the girl saying that someone else was using his phone. 
According to an annual survey released last year, nine out of 10 rape cases in Israel are closed by prosecutors without any charges. The survey also found a significant increase in people reporting sexual assault and harassment to the authorities.
A separate report by the Association of Rape Crisis Centers in Israel found that in 2018, police opened 6,220 investigations into alleged sex crimes and harassment, including 1,166 investigations of suspected rape.
This marked a 12 percent increase as compared to the previous year and a 40% rise from 2013.
Furthermore, amid a rise in high-profile gang rape cases in Israeli schools, the report found that 63% of victims reported gang rapes in 2018 were of girls between the ages of 12 and 18.  
Thousands protest across Israel after girl, 16, was 'gang-raped by 30 men’ in a hotel as teenager claims one ‘offered to send her videos of her ordeal’ Thousands protest across Israel after girl, 16, was 'gang-raped by 30 men’ in a hotel as teenager claims one ‘offered to send her videos of her ordeal’ Reviewed by STATION GOSSIP on 01:29 Rating: 5

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