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Settler violence sparks disputes within Bennett’s government

Public Security Minister Omer Bar Lev instigated an argument within the coalition over settler violence, and whether it is an expanding phenomenon or just marginal incidents.
Israeli Minister of Public Security Omer Bar Lev arrives for a photo at the president's residence during a ceremony for the new coalition government, Jerusalem, June 14, 2021.

Public Security Minister Omer Bar Lev triggered a major uproar this week, with members of the coalition and even of the Cabinet joining forces with the opposition in a series of scathing attacks against him. The furor was instigated by a Dec. 13 meeting he had with US Undersecretary of State Victoria Nuland, during her visit to Israel. He followed up this meeting by tweeting, “She asked, among other things, about settler violence, how tensions in the region can be reduced and how we can help strengthen the Palestinian Authority.”  

It was a brief tweet, but it inevitably aroused the wrath of major figures in the settler movement, not to mention the political right. They protested the broad generalizations he allegedly made about an entire sector of the population.

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