Judea, Samaria cops probe 'price-tag' attack on IDF base

13 military vehicles tagged with the words "Price Tag," and "Greetings from Migron"; IDF condemns vandalism, says culprits will be caught.

By JPOST.COM STAFF
September 7, 2011 15:10
2 minute read.
Price tag vandalism (illustrative)

price tag 311. (photo credit: Tovah Lazaroff)

Detectives from Judea and Samaria Police have arrived at the West Bank IDF base which was the site of alleged "price-tag" vandalism by far-right elements on Wednesday, as part of an investigation into the incident.

Anonymous vandals broke into the Hativat Binyamin army base in Beit El, tagging at least ten military vehicles with the Hebrew words "Price Tag" and "Greetings from Migron." The vandals also punctured tires, smashed car windows, and cut cables.

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Forensic officers also arrived on the scene and removed samples from the crime scene.

The IDF's Military Police has, in the meantime, launched an investigation to see whether the attackers had help from soldiers inside the base.

"We are viewing unequivocally this as a criminal incident," a police spokeswoman told The Jerusalem Post.

The investigation could soon be handed over to the Judea and Samaria police district's central unit, which handles serious cases.

Earlier, the IDF condemned the "price-tag" attack, saying the army and police will work together to bring the culprits to justice.

In an IDF Spokesman's Office statement, OC Central Command Commander Maj.-Gen. Avi Mizrahi said that "directing anger towards military officials in order to deter them from carrying out legal actions decided on by the government and High Court is wrong and deserves severe condemnation."

"I intend, together with law enforcement, to catch those responsible and bring them to justice," Mizrahi said.

Army Radio said the attack was likely carried out by a group, and not an individual, and that the infiltrators may have received help from soldiers in order to break into the base.

The Yesha Council strongly condemned the attacks, demanding the culprits turn themselves in to the police, and that security forces act decisively to prevent such incidents from occurring again.

Opposition leader Tzipi Livni also responded to the incident, saying that "price-tag" attacks are hate crimes and are contrary to Jewish and Israeli values.

She said that these new actions, if carried out by Israelis, are "crossing a red line."

Livni called on law enforcement to do their part to stop such incidents from occurring, and Israeli leadership must come out strongly against such attacks.

The "price-tag" attack occurred after arsonists burned property in a West Bank mosque on Monday, the morning after three homes in the Migron outpost were demolished by the IDF.

At the mosque, vandals spray-painted messages in Hebrew saying, “Social justice for Alei Ayin and Migron” (Alei Ayin is another outpost that was recently demolished) and “Muhammad is a pig." A Star of David was also spray-painted.

The civil administration contacted Judea and Samaria police, which launched an investigation and sent forensic officers to retrieve samples from the building.

Tovah Lazaroff and Khaled Abu Toameh contributed to this report.


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