‘Believe in Security’ campaign rolled out to combat rising violence, crime in Arab areas

There were 51 Arab murder victims in Israel in 2014 – compared to 113 in 2020 and 110 in 2021.

Arab Israelis and Haredi youth at a café in Jerusalem (photo credit: MARC ISRAEL SELLEM)
Arab Israelis and Haredi youth at a café in Jerusalem
(photo credit: MARC ISRAEL SELLEM)

Israel’s Ministry of Public Security on Thursday rolled out a new anti-violence initiative – titled “Believe in Security” – aimed at improving ties and mutual understanding between Arab Israelis and Israeli law enforcement as Israel aims to combat the wave of rising crime in Arab towns and cities across Israel. 

“The fight against crime and restoring a sense of security to the residents are a fundamental duty of the state and part of a social change that must be done together and in cooperation with Arab society and its public leaders,” said Deputy Minister of Public Security Yoav Segalovich. 

The campaign is intended to deepen the Arab public's awareness of the national effort to reduce crime, which in turn would improve security and strengthen trust and cooperation between law enforcement agencies and Arab Israelis. The campaign will be launched via digital media, billboards and other conventional media.

Violence in Arab regions of Israel has risen dramatically over the last several years. For instance, Residents of Umm el-Fahm, an Arab city of some 60,000 residents near Haifa, say crime on the streets is out of control and there is no one to enforce the law and maintain order. There were 51 Arab murder victims in Israel in 2014 – compared to 113 in 2020 and 110 in 2021. 

"The first to suffer from crime in Arab society are members of society itself, many of whom have explicitly called on the state to act for years to increase their personal security,” said Israel’s Head of Public Diplomacy Elad Tene.

 Israel’s Ministry of Public Security on Thursday rolled out a new anti-violence initiative for Arab Israelis – titled “Believe in Security.” (credit: Courtesy) Israel’s Ministry of Public Security on Thursday rolled out a new anti-violence initiative for Arab Israelis – titled “Believe in Security.” (credit: Courtesy)

As violence in Arab-majority regions rises, much of it due to gangs and criminal activities, a recent poll showed that 73% of Arab-Israelis have a distrust of Israeli law enforcement – an issue that has exacerbated the crisis of rising crime. 

"We consider it of paramount importance to involve the public with the many efforts, actions and achievements of the National Program for the Treatment of Violence and Crime,” added Tomer Lotan, the Director-General of the Ministry of Public Security. "Sharing is a key to strengthening the trust and sense of security that we are committed to towards all Israeli citizens."

Gil Hoffman and Zev Stub contributed to this report.