Security officers lifted a gag order Monday afternoon and revealed that the target of a police swoop in the Golan Heights Sunday was the house of a Druze resident suspected of aiding the enemy. A mob of angry Druze violently tried to prevent the police from searching the premises.
He was identified as Fada Sha’ar, who had been detained earlier at Ben Gurion airport after returning from France. He has been ordered to remain in custody during the investigation. Details of the probe still are under wraps.
Law enforcement officers were forced to call in reinforcements to rescue the policemen already holed up in the village of Majdal Shams. Druze leaders negotiated with police and eventually helped lead the trapped officers to safety after a two-hour ordeal in which they feared for their lives.
Large police forces were rushed to the area, and began working to quell the riot. Ambulances were ordered not to enter the village while riots continue, due to safety concerns. Instead, they waited on a main road as police worked to restore order.
The Golan Heights is divided approximately in half between Jews and Druze, Many of the Golan Druze have divided loyalties between Syria and Israel because of their uncertainty about the area's future sovereignty. The Druze traditionally are loyal to whoever is ruling the areas in which they reside.