Opposition leader Yair Lapid on Wednesday met with leaders of the Arab Israeli sector, which has suffered a record 170 murders this year.
“Not enough has been done to reduce crime in Arab society, and some of what has been done worsens the situation,” he said in Umm el-Fahm at a meeting with representatives of the Arab municipalities.
'The gov't trusted Ben-Gvir, this is the result'
National Security Minister Itamar Ben-Gvir (Otzma Yehudit) campaigned on a platform of fighting crime across all sectors, and he has been criticized for the record murder rate.
The meeting was also attended by Yesh Atid MK Yoav Segalovitz, Umm el-Fahm Mayor Samir Mahamed, and Moder Younes, chairman of the committee of the heads of the Arab authorities.
“The current government is abandoning Arab society,” Mahamed said, adding: “I want to ask if it is likely that 174 were murdered and the government does nothing? The current government entrusted security to Ben-Gvir, and the results are accordingly.”
Segalovitz cited a program that he implemented while he was internal security deputy minister called “Safe Route,” which led to a 16% decrease in the murder rate in Arab society.
Lapid said he “did not want to use this meeting to speak against the government, but we all know the truth: Not enough is being done, and some of what is being done is making the situation worse. When we were in the government, the number of murdered people decreased 16%. Since the current government was established, the number of murdered people has increased 65%.
“You ask yourself, what has changed this year? The same commissioner, the same police, the same head of the Shin Bet [Israel Security Agency], the same local government, the same civilian society. The only thing that has changed is the government. A government came up that stopped everything we did without offering anything in its place.”
The coalition has attempted to combat the rising crime, including enlisting the Shin Bet’s help. Nevertheless, murders in the Arab Israeli sector are taking place at an alarming rate.