The chair of the Knesset Committee for Internal Security, MK Merav Ben Ari, coalition head MK Idit Silman, and the chair of the Yamina party, MK Nir Orbach, visited the city of Lod on Sunday.
During their tour of the mixed Arab-Jewish city, the MKs met with Lod’s mayor, Yair Revivo, representatives of the Ganei Aviv neighborhood, and city council members.
For MK Ben Ari, this was not her first visit to Lod. “We came here to meet with representatives of the Ganei Aviv neighborhood, and we heard them relate their ongoing difficulties – their fear of being out on the streets late at night, how women suffer harassment, and their concern that nationalistic riots will break out again.
“We also met with Lod mayor Yair Revivo and other residents,” she added, “and they related other specific issues that are important to address. We promised to continue to support them and to restore a sense of personal safety for the city’s residents.”
MK Nir Orbach, chair of the Yamina party, noted that, “Since the riots broke out, I have visited Lod at least ten times, maybe more. The most basic issue here is that there is no personal security – things have not returned to normal, even if there are television programs which portray an imaginary reality that is far from the truth.
“Last week, representatives from the city met with the director-general of the Prime Minister’s Office and presented their plans, which we will be endeavoring to implement. And I wish to note that a dramatic change has occurred recently – the government now recognizes that in order to restore security here, the police is not enough. Therefore, the Shabak is now going to be involved, and this was made a definite decision in last week’s meeting of the Ministerial Committee for Dealing with Violence in the Arab Sector. What we need to do now is get everyone down to work,” he added, “and keep going until we see the changes on the ground.”
Coalition head MK Idit Silman noted that, “We established this government in order to put an end to the shameful situation in which mixed cities have been placed in a continual situation of emergency, in which families are afraid to leave their homes, in which synagogues are torched. The current situation is a breach of the basic contract between the state and its citizens.
“Our visit to Lod today was part of our plan to restore personal security to the city’s residents, to put an end to crime, and to rehabilitate the city socially and economically,” she said. “The time has come for us to build a state here in the most basic sense of the word.”