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Women in Green: Don't Bother Calling the Police

Women in Green founders Matar and Katsover say police discrimination in Yesha is so bad it's a waste of time to call them.
By A7 Staff
First Publish: 11/8/2011, 3:12 AM

Nadia Matar - Women in Green
Nadia Matar - Women in Green
Courtesy

Women in Green founders Nadia Matar and Yehudit Katsover were detained for six hours by Israeli police when they called for aid and sought to file a complaint.

At the end of their ordeal they concluded those seeking redress when attacked by Arabs shouldn't bother calling the police.

"In the morning we saw that Arabs had uprooted, for the fifth time, tens of small olive trees that had been planted by Jews on State Lands. We were three activists from Women in Green and Netzer,” Matar related.

"We managed to gather some saplings that the Arabs had thrown away after uprooting them. When we tried to replant the saplings back in the holes, three Arabs attacked us, one man and two women.

"We immediately called the army and police. Together with the army and police, the civil Administration also arrived, who categorically made clear that these lands are State Lands.

"Despite that, within minutes, we found ourselves in the police van, detained, along with the Arabs!

"At the Hebron police station the Kafkesque story continued when we were accused of trespassing and assault. We made it clear to them that we are the complainants after having been attacked by Arabs. How did we turn from being a victim into being accused?"

Matar said that while she and Katsover were detained, they observed police chatting amiably with their Arab assailants instead of seriously investigating the serious charge of assault.

Conversely, Matar was interrogated at length and received a two week eviction order from the area where she had been attacked by Arabs in the morning.

Police also informed Matar there were two complaints pending against her and that she would have to return to be interrogated this coming Sunday.

"We don't need to describe what would have happened if the opposite situation in which Jews uprooted Arab saplings and attacked Arabs had occurred," Matar said, pointing to the hypocrisy inherent in both enforcement and media coverage of such events.

"The entire media would have been filled with denunciations, accusations of "price tag" operations, and who knows what more…. But when Arabs uproot Jewish trees and attack Jews…nobody in the police cares.

"Our advice is clear: don't bother calling the police," Matar concluded.

Katsover said she filed a complaint against the Arabs for the assault, and against the discriminatory posture of the police towards Jews in Judea and Samaria in general – and Nadia Matar in particular.