Price tag vandalism in Jerusalem (illustrativ
Price tag vandalism in Jerusalem (illustrativFlash 90

An Arab village in the Galilee has been targeted in a suspected "price-tag" incident, according to police.

Around 40 cars had their tires slashed in the predominantly Christian village of Jish, in northern Israel, which lies some 25 kilometres (15 miles) north of the Sea of Galilee, police spokeswoman Luba Samri said Thursday morning.

"This morning in Jish, it was discovered that almost 40 vehicles had had their tyres slashed," she told AFP, saying police had opened an investigation.    

Written in Hebrew on a nearby wall were the words: "Only Gentiles (non-Jews) should be removed from our land," she said, in an apparent reference to ongoing efforts to ethnically-cleanse Jews from parts of Judea and Samaria.

"Price tag" is a euphemism for politically-motivated vandalism and criminal damage usually attributed to Jewish extremists, carried out either in revenge for Arab terrorist attacks, or in protest of Israeli government policies such as the destruction of Jewish homes in Judea and Samaria.  

In at least some cases, however, the attacks have been revealed to be the work of Arab provocateurs. In a recent expose, Arutz Sheva reported on an incident in which Arab activists damaged an Arab-owned orchard and scrawled "price-tag" graffiti in an attempt to frame local Jews in Samaria's Binyamin region, north of Jerusalem.

There have also been numerous incidents of Arab "price tagging", though such incidents have received far less media coverage.

On Tuesday, a Roman Catholic convent in Bet Shemesh, west of the capital, was vandalized by suspected price-taggers, who sprayed offensive graffiti on the walls and damaged five nearby cars, prompting a sharp condemnation from the church leadership and Israeli leaders.

Last week, Israeli President Shimon Peres condemned the price tag phenomenon after Arab-owned cars were targeted by vandals in Jerusalem.