Prime Minister Netanyahu visited the Acre police station for a discussion and assessment of the security situation – with the mayor, the Public Security Minister, the Inspector General of the Israel Police and other senior officials – following events in the city.
PM Netanyahu delivered the following remarks to the media following the meeting:
“We are in a fight on several fronts. Last night, at 02:00, after the discussions and decisions at the Kirya about the situation in Gaza, I went to Lod, another front of anarchy that was opened there. We also made decisions there and brought in forces and this afternoon here in Acre. We will continue the effort to stop the anarchy, restore governance to Israel’s cities with an iron fist if necessary, with all necessary force and with all necessary authority.
From here I am going back to the Kirya to meet with the IDF Chief-of-Staff and GOC Air Force. This evening, I will convene the Security Cabinet. There have been difficult developments, including anti-tank fire. We will respond, and are responding, with increasing force; I will not go into details here.
Regarding the disturbances that we saw, unfortunately, in the Jewish-Arab integrated cities: First of all, this is intolerable. This reminds us of scenes from the history of our people and we cannot accept this, certainly not in our state. My first directive was to bring in Border Police units from Judea and Samaria to assist the Israel Police and this was done. These forces have arrived in Lod, Acre and other places. They are now under police control in a way that they had not been previously, and this is important. Second, I asked that they be given emergency situation authority. There was a bit of a struggle about this as well but we resolved this legal issue. Now they are equipped with tools including the imposition of curfews, if necessary.
It must be understood that the first thing we want is to stop the wave of riots. I call on all public leaders, especially the leaders of the Arab public, to condemn and to take all action to stop this. We will use the sovereign power in our hands to impose order and restore quiet and security to the citizens and cities of Israel.”
Prime Minister Netanyahu added:
“The fabric of life that we all aspire to and that we are all proud of, there are those who are trying to unravel it, we will not allow this. We will deal with them and we will impose governance and restore Acre and the cities of Israel to the track of integration, success and taking full part in the wonder that is Israel. Whoever thinks that they will succeed in moving us backward – they will not succeed thanks to the combination of correct policy, the investment of resources and also much force where it is necessary.
I would like to thank those who are faithful to this mission – the police and Border Police personnel, the Inspector General, the commanders and the Public Security Minister. Strong work and backing are needed here; just as the citizens of Israel back the soldiers of the IDF, they also need to back Israel Police officers and Border Police fighters. This is the same fight. This is the same fight for the State of Israel and its security – both external and internal. We give full backing to the police.
If somebody thinks that there will not be united, strong and forceful leadership here due to this or that consideration, they are mistaken. We are here and we are using the full weight of our power in order to defend the State of Israel from enemies from without and from rioters within.”
(YWN Israel Desk – Jerusalem)