Negev Residents: Police Chased Away by Bedouin Stone Throwers

Negev (Flash 90)
A town in the Negev. (Flash90)

Residents of the southern Israeli town of Retamim are up in arms over the response of police to a rock-throwing incident in the town Sunday – in which police who had gathered to issue demolition orders for illegally built Arab homes disappeared as Arabs began throwing stones at them – and at Israeli drivers who were in the area.

The rocks were thrown at police by residents of the village of Bir Hajj, who were attempting to prevent police from distributing the orders. Caught up in the ensuing riot was an Israeli driver who was trying to get to Retamim. The driver said that as soon as the Arabs started throwing stones, the officers got into their vehicles and drove away – ignoring the attacks on him. One rock broke the window of the vehicle, he said, and crashed into the vehicle, landing inches away from his four-year-old son.

According to the Ramat Negev Regional Council, such responses by the Arab villagers to the demolition orders are normal, to the extent that police have been forced to accompany drivers into and out of Retamim and other towns in the area due to Arab rock throwing on numerous occasions.

Police did not comment on the story to NRG news, which first revealed the matter.