Beginning on Wednesday and continuing through Saturday night, mobs of right-wing Jewish Israelis have attacked the neighborhoods of African immigrants in the southern part of the city of Tel Aviv, throwing stones and bottles at residents and looting shops.
According to an eyewitness report by a volunteer with the Hotline for Migrant Workers in Israel, “[a]fter a dose of racial incitement from the Members of Knesset who addressed them, Miri Regev, Danny Danon, Yariv Levin and Michael Ben-Ari, a handful of the protesters went on to attack Africans and stores owned by them in the Hatikva neighborhood. I arrived in the neighborhood with a camera to document what had happened.”
The eyewitness, identified as Elisabeth Tsurkov, said, “I saw a policeman protecting a group of Eritrean refugees after one of the family members was attacked with a glass bottle while carrying his son, who as a result was dropped to the ground…I saw the blood of a Sudanese refugee on the pavement after he was stoned by a group of Israelis chasing him. I saw a shop owned by an Eritrean refugee, which was looted after its storefront was broken.”
The string of attacks comes in the midst of increasing incitement against the non-white Israeli population, including indigenous Palestinian citizens of Israel and African immigrants into the country, by Israeli politicians and party leaders. Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu recently stated that the African immigrants, many of whom are refugees from war-torn regions, “threaten Israel’s social fabric”, and called for the implementation of policies that would refuse them services, deny them entry, and force the deportation of many who are living in Israel already.
In Tsurkov’s account of the events of the last few days, she wrote, “Some [of the Israeli attackers] called the refugees ‘cockroaches’, a woman said they should be killed and exterminated because non-Jews should not exist in the land of Israel, another of the residents said the refugees’ heads need to be cut like chickens, others simply thought ‘they should be deported back to Sudan.’ The hatred was also directed at the ‘leftists’ whom the residents blamed for the encroachment of refugees in their neighborhood.”
The Hotline for Migrant Workers called on the Israeli government to take responsibility for the situation of migrant workers in Israel, and allow for a legal process for refugees to be allowed to seek asylum in the Jewish state – a status which is currently denied to non-Jews.
- Right-wing Israeli MPs whipped up Tel Aviv race riots: reports (theuglytruth.wordpress.com)
- Israel: Race riots and double standards (jeff-goodall.com)
Israeli settlers invaded a home in a Palestinian-owned building in the occupied West Bank city of Hebron and took up the apartment as their own, residents and Israeli security forces said on Thursday.
“At 1:30am we heard noises and it was the settlers,” Montasser Abu Rajab, who lives on the first floor of the building in Hebron’s Old City, said.
“They broke the main door and brought their furniture in, accompanied by the army, who locked us in our house,” he said.
Palestinian sources in Hebron said that the property belonged to the Abu Rajab family, who had sold the second floor of the house to another Palestinian family.
But the Israeli army – who confirmed the incident – claimed that “the title to the property is contested.”
“The area has been declared a closed military zone, and soldiers have been put in place to keep the calm,” a spokeswoman for the Israeli army said.
Israeli police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld said “police have been dispatched to the scene to verify the legal status of the house and the property titles that are apparently the subject of litigation.”
The settlers also claimed that they had titles to the property, which is located near a prominent religious site for both Muslims and Jews.
Speaking to Israeli public radio, right-wing Israeli lawmaker Michael Ben Ari, of the National Union party, said it was “time to recover all the Jewish homes in Hebron stolen by the enemy.”
Right-wing Israeli politicians and figures often incite violence against Arabs, with Palestinians frequently attacked and harassed by settlers as well as the Israeli military, often with impunity.
House demolitions and evictions are among the serious threats indigenous Palestinians face on their native land, as Israel continues to build Jewish-only settlements in the West Bank, including in Hebron, in defiance of the international community.
Israeli settlements in the West Bank are considered illegal under international law, with the territory being only a fraction of historical Palestine on which the Israeli state is now situated.
Israel maintains a military occupation of the West Bank and Jerusalem, imposing harsh restrictions on native Palestinians while providing privileges to illegal Jewish settlers.
- Hebron teen ‘shot by Israeli settler’ (alethonews.wordpress.com)
- Settlers Attack Two Towns Near Hebron (alethonews.wordpress.com)
- Settler Violence: Broken Glass on Shuhada Street (alethonews.wordpress.com)
- Settlers Install New Outpost Near Hebron (alethonews.wordpress.com)
- International Solidarity Movement volunteers encounter settler attack and sexual harassment in Hebron (alethonews.wordpress.com)
- Israeli demolition ‘displaces 120′ in Hebron village (alethonews.wordpress.com)
- Soldiers raid community center, arrest local activist (alethonews.wordpress.com)