May 30, 2024
Search
Close this search box.
Search
Close this search box.
May 30, 2024
Search
Close this search box.

Linking Northern and Central NJ, Bronx, Manhattan, Westchester and CT

Popular Ex-Mayor of Teaneck in Altercation on Temple Mount

Jerusalem–Moderate Muslim role model, Mohammed Hameeduddin, the popular former Teaneck mayor and current town council member, was involved in an altercation when he went to the Temple Mount with a group of Muslims from the Muslim Leadership Initiative, hosted by the Shalom Hartman Institute (considered by many a left-of-center Israeli think tank). As the first Muslim mayor of Teaneck, Hameeduddin gained national attention as a model for cultural partnership and friendship between Jews and Muslims.

The Electronic Intifada, a pro-Palestinian propaganda website, said the incident occurred when a Jerusalem resident who uses the pseudonym Zalameh approached the delegation of US Muslim leaders and verbally “challenged” their participation in the Hartman Institute-sponsored trip. Zalameh kept following a woman who tried to get away from him as he continued to approach her and asked why she was there. The website accuses the Hartman Institute of “faithwashing” Muslims like Hameeduddin.

The incident was captured on a smartphone camera, and shows the councilman as he moves the camera out of range of the woman and shouts at Zalameh to stop harassing the people he is with. The website alleges that he “lunged at” Zalameh to attack him.

“The BDS (Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions) activists were waiting to ambush me while I was going to prayers. I did not hit anyone; I was protecting the women in my group,” said Hameeduddin in an email to friends. He later explained to friend, fellow Teaneck councilman and JLNJ co-publisher Mendy Schwartz, that the motion he made was to cover the camera recording the conversation the man was having with a woman and others in the group without consent, as she was attempting to get away from him. In the video, the woman seems clearly intimidated.

“Why are you here? You are here against the will of the Palestinian people, on an initiative to understand the narrative against those who are killing people in Gaza,” said Zalameh. “You don’t want to be publicly accountable?”

“Turn off the camera,” the woman said. “I am not touching you, but I am turning off your camera,” she said.

“You guys are here with the Islamaphobic organization. Is that correct?” Zalameh asked. “No, that’s not correct,” said another delegate. The situation seemed to deteriorate from there, finally ending when someone, allegedly the ex-mayor, physically grabbed the camera as the recording ended.

“Mohammed (Hameedudin) is like 160 pounds soaking wet. He is not going to attack anyone,” Schwartz told JLNJ. “He is a great guy, he was an excellent mayor and a strong supporter of the Modern Orthodox community in Teaneck. He always showed up at every kiddush, and not just for the food. He worked on getting additional patrols for all houses of worship, and created an open dialogue with the rabbis and the residents of Teaneck,” said Schwartz.

Hameeduddin told Schwartz on Wednesday morning that the activist was pushing and verbally assaulting the women in his group, and that his action was protective and simply intended to stop that assault. “There was no physical confrontation, but my friend is now fearful because he crossed the ‘picket’ line by touring the area with a pro-Israel group. My thoughts and prayers are with him and I wish him a safe trip back home,” said Schwartz.

By Elizabeth Kratz

Leave a Comment

Most Popular Articles