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Tags: israel | security | terror | attacks

Israel Steps Up Security in Wake of Two Deadly Stabbing Attacks

Tuesday, 11 November 2014 07:46 AM EST

Israeli security forces beefed up patrols and began clamping down on Palestinians who have entered Israel illegally after a soldier and a settler were killed in separate knife attacks.

Months of politically motivated violence centered in Jerusalem spilled over into Tel Aviv yesterday for the first time, when a Palestinian who had slipped into Israel knifed a soldier near a Tel Aviv train station, killing him. Hours later, a 26-year-old woman was stabbed to death and two others were wounded outside the West Bank settlement of Alon Shvut south of Jerusalem.

Regular and volunteer police patrols were reinforced across the country, and police and the army began tightening checks on illegal entries, police spokeswoman Luba Samri said, without providing details. Many of the Palestinians who enter without permits work in Israeli businesses. Army spokeswoman Lieutenant Libby Weiss said additional troops were deployed in some areas.

Israel has been roiled by months of politically charged unrest, sparked by the July killing of a Palestinian teenager in east Jerusalem in suspected retribution for the kidnapping and murder of three Israeli youths. Disturbances continued through Israel’s 50-day war against Gaza Strip militants, and have expanded into clashes over access to a hilltop compound in Jerusalem holy to both Muslims and Jews.

‘Chase Us Out’

The fatal shooting of an Israeli Arab man over the weekend by police in disputed circumstances has ratcheted up the friction, touching off protests and acts of violence in some Arab areas.

“The terrorists want to chase us out of everywhere,” Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said in remarks broadcast by Israel Radio from a Likud party meeting in Jerusalem. “I promise you, they won’t succeed.” Netanyahu, after consulting with top security and legal officials, ordered the deployment of more security forces and the demolition of the homes of attackers, whom he called terrorists.

Science Minister Jacob Perry, a former head of the Shin Bet intelligence agency, said weapons and technology won’t solve Israel’s security problems.

“Homeland security cannot be achieved solely through the purchase of the right tanks, jets or security systems,” Perry said today at a security conference in Tel Aviv. “Security is also a person’s hope, and his personal and social development.”

Perry’s party supports a negotiated settlement with the Palestinians, and earlier this week he told Army Radio his Yesh Atid party needs to decide whether to stay in the government, saying Netanyahu was “veering to the right.”

Yesh Atid’s leader, Finance Minister Yair Lapid, has repeatedly criticized Netanyahu’s peace efforts.

‘Defiant Tone’

Violence persisted after the stabbings, with rocks thrown at an Arab taxi driver in Jerusalem yesterday and Jewish youngsters marching down a major city street chanting “Death to the Arabs,” Samri said. Tires of five cars were punctured in an Arab neighborhood of the city, and graffiti reading, “no vehicles, no Arabs” was spray-painted nearby. Tires were burned and fireworks hurled during a protest in Kafr Kanna, the village where the Israeli Arab man was killed over the weekend, she added.

Jonathan Spyer, a political scientist at the Interdisciplinary Center Herzliya, a college north of Tel Aviv, predicted the violence won’t be quickly stopped.

“The tone that Israeli policymakers are trying to strike is one of defiance and not of capitulation,” Spyer said. Hamas and Islamic Jihad, which are considered terrorist organizations by the U.S., European Union and Israel, “aren’t interested in a political process.”

Israeli Arab lawmaker Ahmed Tibi warned that a Palestinian uprising may erupt inside and outside Israel’s borders if Netanyahu doesn’t ease tensions between Arabs and Jews.

“I can’t remember a past situation where a prime minister is competing over who fans the flames more and who incites more fire,” Tibi said yesterday at his office in parliament.


© Copyright 2023 Bloomberg News. All rights reserved.

Israeli security forces beefed up patrols and began clamping down on Palestinians who have entered Israel illegally after a soldier and a settler were killed in separate knife attacks.Months of politically motivated violence centered in Jerusalem spilled over into Tel Aviv...
israel, security, terror, attacks
Tuesday, 11 November 2014 07:46 AM
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