Border Police over the transfer of several hundred policemen to the West Bank
from the Jordanian border, The Jerusalem Post has learned.RELATED:Rights groups decry olive harvest settler vandalismPalestinians blame 'hilltop youth' for school arson
discussions come ahead of a possible escalation in violence in the West Bank
under a moratorium or with the evacuation of settlements.
The talks are
being held between Border Police chief Cmdr. Yisrael Yitzhak and the IDF
“There is a need to beef up forces in the West
Bank due to a possible increase in tensions there over progress in the peace
talks,” a defense official said.
During the talks, the IDF said that two
to three companies of border policemen who were specially trained in
control and crowd dispersal techniques would suffice, but the Border
recommended the establishment of a larger brigade - or division-level
force that would be deployed at designated “hot spots” in Judea
In June, the Border Police held a massive drill in the West
Bank aimed at preparing security forces for an escalation in Israeli and
The brigade-level exercise involved hundreds of
border policemen who drilled scenarios involving civil disturbances and crowd
control. One of the scenarios included a large Jewish demonstration during which
Palestinians carry out a terrorist attack.
While the IDF Central Command
has noted a lull in terrorism in recent years, there has been an increase in
civil disturbances in the West Bank, particularly surrounding the recent olive
harvest, described by the defense establishment as possibly the most violent in
Since the beginning of October, the United Nations has
recorded a weekly average of eight harvest incidents resulting in injuries and
severe damage to property, including the uprooting and burning of thousands of
A new Border Police force in the West Bank would join a task force
of border policemen that was established in April to enforce law and order in
the Nablus area.
The decision followed a spate of anti-Palestinian
attacks, including one by settlers from Yitzhar against soldiers near the
settlement on Independence Day.