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Why is crime spiking in Arab-Israeli community, as murders nearly double in 2023?

Leaders of Arab society staged a three-day sit-in in Jerusalem against the inefficiency of the government in fighting the growing number of deadly violent incidents.
Leaders of Arab society staged a three-day sit-in in Jerusalem, May 29, 2023.

Israeli-Arab politicians and activists have been demonstrating continuously since Monday in Jerusalem against the continued increase in violence and crime within the Israeli-Arab society, calling on the Benjamin Netanyahu government and law-enforcement authorities to adopt more efficient policies to curb the danger.

Several violent incidents have occurred within the Israeli-Arab society over the past few days. A man in his 50s was shot and killed on Tuesday while driving his car in the Israeli-Arab town Umm al-Fahm. A 50-year-old woman was injured in the deadly incident. Police are now verifying whether Tuesday’s criminal incident is related to another shooting incident that took place in Umm al-Fahm last Friday, where a 26-year-old man and a 5-year-old boy were injured. A 30-year-old man was killed on Monday in the Bedouin village of Hura. Police suspect he was intentionally rammed by a vehicle after an earlier brawl. Last week, a 60-year-old man was shot and killed in the town of Ramle by gunmen waiting outside his house. 

The spike in violence is largely attributed to crime, gang-related and domestically motivated activity in the community but it is not sparing innocent bystanders. 

According to Haaretz, 83 Israeli Arabs have been murdered in the country since the beginning of the year. In comparison, 111 Israeli Arabs were killed in all of 2022 and 128 in 2021. Out of the 70 murder cases registered by the end of April, police resolved only six of them. Out of the 111 murder cases registered in 2022, only 25 cases were resolved. 

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