Arab rioter (illustration)
Arab rioter (illustration)STR/Flash 90

Residents of Beit Hagai, located south of Hevron in Judea, are fuming over the decision to arrest the town's security coordinator over suspicions of shooting at an Arab terrorist who tried to break into the town last Saturday during Shabbat.

Yair Lior, a spokesperson for the community, told Arutz Sheva that the arrest decision is part of a ridiculous policy of arresting Jews and defending terrorists.

"Since the Hevron-Be'er Sheva road was opened to Arab traffic, we have become a target of attacks and theft," Lior said. "Recently one of the terrorists reached the gate of the town and tried to run over a resident; fortunately he was caught and by a miracle he didn't manage to conduct his plot."

According to the spokesperson, breaches into the community have become a shocking matter of routine, noting "they also try to get in to steal horses and flocks."

"They try through different pretexts to go up to Givat Rehavam which is in the territory of the town, and pretty slowly army and civilian security forces are called up to distance them from the town's area," said Lior.

Elaborating on the incident last Saturday, Lior emphasized that it was a real attempt to breach into the town which could have ended in tragedy.

"Security forces identified a dangerous and troubling advancement towards the town, and the forces jumped into action," he said. "There was an Arab there who claimed he was wounded by gunshots by one of the people who were there, so the first thing they did was to arrest our security person."

Lior stressed "there is no evidence that the Arab was wounded by gunfire - but that didn't bother the police in arresting him and asking to extend his arrest."

The incident is part of a larger pattern of state policy that needs to be changed, according to the spokesperson.

"Instead of chasing after the thieves and the attackers, they pounce on the Jews and our security people, and make problems for them with a long and tiring legal process," Lior said. "Also in this case they arrested the security coordinator to break his spirits and put him behind lock and key."

"Even if they release him, the injustice has been done," concluded the spokesperson. "This is truly a warping of justice, someone acts with self-sacrifice and instead of getting a citation of honor they arrest him."

Strengthening Lior's argument that the arrest is part of a general pattern targeting security personnel, there is a Border Patrol officer currently fighting a court case over charges that he shot an Arab rioter, who took part in violent Nakba Day riots that apparently sought to free terrorists from the Ofer Prison last May.