01.04.2011 26.Adar ll, 5771
"I haven’t worked for 2 weeks," says owner of Mt. of Olives photographic icon; city municipality says animal lacks vaccinations, license.
The iconic photo of a tourist sitting on a camel’s back with the Dome of the Rock in the background is under threat, after Jerusalem Municipality officials detained Kojak the Camel for not having the correct paperwork.
The 11-year-old Kojak is owned by Ali Abu Hawa, whose family has owned the camels that tourists use for pictures on the Mount of Olives for the past 26 years.
The municipality charges that Abu Hawa was operating without a license and that his camel was not properly vaccinated against rabies and other diseases, a requirement for any animals working with tourists or the public. Abu Hawa said he had originally been given a license to keep a camel on the Mount of Olives during Teddy Kollek's tenure as Jerusalem mayor. He renewed the license annually, as was required, but starting in 2009 the municipality refused to renew it. The veterinarian then refused to give the camel the vaccinations because the license was invalid….