President Rivlin Calls for Calm After Violence at Anti-Government Demonstrations
JNS.org – Israeli President Reuven Rivlin on Wednesday spoke out against the descent into violence the day before of demonstrations against Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Internal Security Minister Amir Ohana.
“I want to say clearly, given the violent developments over the last day: the murder of a demonstrator who goes to protest in the State of Israel, or the murder of an Israeli prime minister, are not imaginary scenarios,” said Rivlin.
“I cry out against the violence directed towards demonstrators and call on the Israel Police to pursue its perpetrators to the fullest extent of the law. I cry out against the calls to harm the prime minister and his family and call on the Israel Police to address every threat of this kind with the utmost seriousness. We cannot discount any threat. Our existence depends on it. Now—immediately—the opposition and the coalition should speak up and take actions to calm things down and stop the violence.”
On Tuesday evening, anti-government protesters were attacked near the Tel Aviv home of Public Security Minister Amir Ohana, where they had been demonstrating. In videos from the scene, the attackers were seen hitting protesters with glass bottles, clubs and chairs, and spraying them with pepper spray.
Netanyahu wrote on Twitter following the incident that “The investigation is ongoing. I expect the police will get to the truth and prosecute all those responsible. There is no place for violence regardless of the reason. In the same way, there is no room for incitement and threats of murder—explicit and implicit—against me and my family. ”
A man was arrested Tuesday night outside the Prime Minister’s Office in Jerusalem after making threats against Netanyahu and his family, according to police. The suspect and his wife were found to have in their possession a plastic gun and two razor blades.