Students show support for troops in face of protesters

Kadima's MK Schneller calls to indict stone-throwing activists at West Bank security barrier.

im tirzu 248.88 (photo credit: Eyal Eshkol/ Im Tirzu)
im tirzu 248.88
(photo credit: Eyal Eshkol/ Im Tirzu)
As activists gathered to shout obscenities and to hurl rocks at soldiers near a section of the West Bank security barrier at the village of Nil'in on Friday, a group of 50 youths from the 'Im Tirzu' student organization arrived at the checkpoint to show their support and to hand out gift baskets to security forces. The group was accompanied by MK Otniel Schneller (Kadima) and Mendy Safdie, spokesman for Deputy Minister for the Development of the Negev and Galilee Ayoub Kara. Schneller explained that he came to protest against the anarchists and the radical Left, insisting that "an indictment must be filed [against them] and that the phenomenon must be seriously addressed." The protestors who arrive at Nil'in every Friday to demonstrate against the barrier's construction stray from the village checkpoint, entering a restricted military zone. According to Safdie, the deputy minister had already written to Interior Minister Eli Yishai, asking him to act against the demonstrators. The same request was also made to Public Security Minister Yitzhak Aharanovitch. Amit Barak, assistant director general of Im Tirtzu, told The Jerusalem Post that the organization was calling on Knesset members and the government to act with decisiveness against the protesters. "The time has come to issue restraining orders and to impose administrative detention… Every now and then we hear of [such actions] being taken against Right-wing activists. Therefore, there is nothing to prevent [the state] from acting against the anarchists that return on a weekly basis to misbehave and harm the security forces. "In addition, we call on Eli Yishai, the new interior minister, to begin dealing with the same foreign anarchists that create provocations, incite and physically harm soldiers and border guards in Judea and Samaria. They should be arrested, expelled from the country and prevented from returning again," Barak told the Post. Im Tirzu is a student organization that aims to "strengthen Zionist ideals" to Israeli university campuses.