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Leaders of Palestinians of ‘48 Begin Hunger Strike over Police Negligence

Leaders of Palestinians of ‘48 Begin Hunger Strike over Police Negligence

Monday, 4 November, 2019 - 08:45
Israeli border police members stand guard following an incident at Qalandia checkpoint in the Israeli-occupied West Bank September 18, 2019. (Reuters)

The political leaders of the Arab citizens of Israel, known as Palestinians of ‘48, announced a three-day hunger strike starting Sunday to protest the escalation of violence and crime within the Arab society, which the police still face with impotence and negligence.

They began a sit-in near government offices in West Jerusalem and announced that they would remain there throughout the entire strike.

Islamic Movement MP Walid Taha said the sit-in and hunger strike are not just a protest, but a move to reach resolutions that guarantee the Arabs’ right to life.

Arab Movement for Change MP Osama al-Saadi said the government continues to ignore its responsibilities and is not taking immediate action to reduce violence.

He warned that they will not remain silent to the problems, asserting: “We are part of the Palestinian people, then why is the crime rate there so much less than in our areas?”

The High Follow-Up Committee for Arab citizens in Israel detailed the protest plan. It said protest tents were set up in front of the office of the Prime Minister and ministry buildings in Jerusalem.

Head of the Committee Mohammed Baraka emphasized that the government, with the complicity of the police, is fully responsible for the spike in crime.

“Police claims that less than 2 percent of Arab society is the cause of the crime, meaning 98 percent wants to live in peace and security, so why don't they act?” wondered Baraka, adding that such behavior means that criminals are protected by the government and police.

He stated that since the beginning of the year, 79 people have been killed in Arab society, meaning 52 deaths per one million people, while the rate in the Israeli-occupied West Bank is nine deaths per one million people and in Jordan it is 11 deaths per one million people.

This vast difference is a clear indication of the complicity of the Israeli police, concluded Baraka.

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