Physical Confrontations and Arrests at a Rally Against Arab Attacks in Beit El
ט׳ במרחשון ה׳ת 10/13/2013 by Elchanan Gruner of Ha’kol Ha’yehudi (translated by Eitan Divinsky)
Five Beit El residents were arrested yesterday during a protest against Arab attacks carried out against residents of the yeshuv. The residents prevented security forces from carrying out arrests over a prolonged period of time.
The residents of Beit El are fed up with daily attacks carried out by Arabs against the Western neighborhoods of the yeshuv. Last night, around 150 of the yeshuv’s residents attended a rally along the fence separating the houses of Beit El and highway 60 from Kfar Jilazun, home to Arabs who throw stones at Beit El residents on a daily basis.
The rally began quietly. A number of the yeshuv’s residents declared that they would no longer accept the continuation of attacks that have been taking place for the last few months. They described the war of “cat and mouse” between the Arab thugs and IDF soldiers that’s been taking place here and elsewhere in Judea and Samaria for the past few months.
Every time there’s a showdown, the soldiers shoot tear gas that has no effect on the Arabs. “We’ve discussed matters with the brigade commander, but he had difficulty comprehending,” said one of the residents. “If we have to, we’ll come here and protest again and again because we want to prevent the types of things that have happened in Psagot and the Jordan Valley” (referring to the recent terrorist attacks in which a 9-year old girl was wounded and a retired general was murdered).
At first, the army closed off the road to Arabs. They ended up opening up the road to traffic, and at a certain point, the police asked the demonstrators to leave the area. Some of the protesters began walking towards the highway. A confrontation took place, during which Yassam police violently arrested five of the protesters.
The other protesters reacted by not allowing the police to get the arrestees out of the yeshuv. The Yassamnikim were prevented from carrying out the arrests over a long period of time during which garbage containers were used to help stop them. In the end, some of the police and army forces were able to leave the yeshuv by way of Kfar Jilzun and at a certain juncture, the residents allowed the forces to leave Beit El. It was reported that during the course of events, one of the local residents punctured the tire of an army jeep.
Amongst those arrested was an elderly resident who volunteers as a paramedic, a father and his two sons, and another youth. It appears that according to a police request, at least part of those arrested will be tried today at the Central Jerusalem Courthouse, in order to prolong their incarcerations. Honenu lawyers will represent the arrestees.