Daily Israel Report

Police Try to Keep MK Out of Akko

Police ask Member of Knesset not to visit Akko over fears of Arab riots. MK: We must not give in.
By Maayana Miskin
First Publish: 11/21/2012, 2:44 AM

MK Michael Ben-Ari (file)
MK Michael Ben-Ari (file)
Flash 90

Police asked Member of Knesset Michael Ben Ari of Ichud Leumi (National Union) to cancel plans to visit the city of Akko in northern Israel. Police expressed concern that his visit would spark Arab riots in the mixed Jewish-Arab city.

Ben-Ari had scheduled a talk and a tour of the city.

The freshman MK refused to cancel his visit despite police intelligence regarding planned violence. “Akko is ours forever,” he declared. “We will not surrender to a handful of hooligans who think Akko is Palestine.”

A riot broke out in the Old City of Akko as the rumor spread through Arab neighborhoods that Ben-Ari and his parliamentary aide, Itamar Ben-Gvir, were in the city. Police dispersed the riot.

Officers told Ben-Ari not to visit the Old City, but he chose to invoke his parliamentary immunity and to enter the area with Ben-Gvir and several local activists in violation of the police order.