An arrest was made following an incident involving a man with a nail gun at an anti-Israel protest in Thornhill

anti Israel protesters
Protesters decry an event promoting sale of Israeli Real Estate, being held in the Aish Thornhill Community Shul, in Thornhill, Sun. March 3, 2024 (Credit: Lila Sarick)

UPDATE (3/8/24): York Regional Police hate crime prevention unit has determined “hate was a motivating factor in this incident and should the accused be found guilty of the offences, the hate-motivated aggravating factors will be presented in court at sentencing.”

York Regional Police arrested a man at a demonstration outside a synagogue Sunday, alleging he had brought a nail gun.

Ilan-Reuben Abramov, 27, of Vaughan, Ont. was charged with assault with a weapon, possessing weapons dangerous to the public and mischief, police said in a statement Sunday evening.

No injuries were reported at the protest.

The demonstration occurred outside the Aish Thornhill Community Shul, on Clark Ave. W. in Thornhill, which was hosting an expo on buying property in Israel, promoted by local real estate agents. The seminar was only open to people who pre-registered.

About 100 protesters lined Clark Avenue while police attempted to keep pro-Israel and pro-Palestinian supporters on separate sides of the street. At one point, a man wearing a ‘Free Palestine’ ball cap rushed across the street, claiming another man had tried to shoot him with a nail gun.

The protest stretched down Clark Avenue, with people waving Israeli and Palestinian flags on the sidewalk in front of a Reena residence for people with disabilities and a public library.

Another real estate expo event focused on Israel, which is visiting multiple U.S. cities along with Montreal, is scheduled at the Beth Avraham Yosef Synagogue of Toronto (BAYT) in Thornhill on Thursday. (The Great Israeli Real Estate Event is currently running paid advertisements with The CJN.)