Security coordinator Andrei Dostov

Security Coordinator whose weapon was impounded last year when spiteful, baseless charges were filed against him by criminals, was wounded last night as he fended off a terrorist with his bare hands while protecting his community.

Last night (Sunday 30 May) a terrorist who infiltrated from the Gaza Strip stabbed the Security Coordinator of one of the Shalom Region communities. The Security Coordinator, who had been awarded certificates of excellence for his outstanding service, was unarmed: Last year, criminals whom he had apprehended and turned over to the police took revenge against him by filing trumped up charges with the Internal Affairs Department. Only last week, the Security Coordinator appealed, with the assistance of Regavim, for the return of his firearm, but his appeal was rejected.

The Security Coordinator of Avshalom, a Jewish community in the “Gaza Envelope” region, prevented what might have been a major terrorist attack, fending off an infiltrator who crossed the security barrier from Gaza armed with knives under cover of darkness last night (Sunday). The Security Coordinator sustained stab wounds to the arms and stomach, and was evacuated to the hospital for medical care. A second security team member, who arrived at the scene while the struggle was in progress, shot the intruder and neutralized him.

The absurdity of the situation can’t be missed: The first responder at the scene, who sprang into action in response to the alert sounded by residents of the community, has been forced to fulfill his security duties for the past year barehanded, as a result of a spiteful, unfounded complaint filed against him by Bedouin criminals from the squatters’ camp at Bir Hadaj whom he apprehended last year. Only last week, the appeal submitted to the Internal Affairs Department of the Ministry of Homeland Security by this decorated and highly regarded Security Coordinator and the Security Coordinator of another nearby Jewish community, with the assistance of the Regavim Movement, was rejected on the grounds that there was “cause for concern for the public’s safety.”  

The two Security Coordinators are Israel Police volunteers, and in the course of their duties last year they detained several suspects. The police officer who joined them issued the suspects citations for serious safety infractions and for violations of corona regulations then in force.

An IDF certificate awarded to the security coordinator

As the situation unfolded, the suspects threatened the volunteer policemen, warning them that they would take revenge. Soon after, they submitted a complaint to the Internal Affairs Investigation Unit, claiming that the volunteers had drawn their weapons on them. As a result, the two Security Coordinators’ personal firearms were impounded, forcing them to submit an appeal with the assistance of the Regavim Movement’s Legal Department.

Absurd as it may sound, their appeal was rejected on the grounds that these highly regarded security specialists pose a potential “danger public safety,” despite the fact that both men continue to take part in active police activity and carry firearms while on duty as volunteer policemen and during their IDF reserve duty, to which both men were conscripted in recent weeks.

“Tonight, it became clear beyond a shadow of doubt that this brave and professional Security Coordinator is no threat to public safety – he is the protector of public safety. If the terrorist had come upon women and children rather encountering this trained and fearless man, tonight would have ended in tragedy,” said Meir Deutsch, Director General of Regavim. “I hope the Ministry of Public Security will come to its senses immediately and return the Security Coordinators’ weapons without delay.”

UPDATE (2 June):
In face of this injustice, Regavim felt the need to intervene and help these two brave men. We raised the issue in the media and on our social media platforms, and made sure the entire country heard about the joint fight of Andrei, his friend Bert, and Regavim.

Yesterday, thanks to Regavim’s legal pressure, and thanks to the help of Minister of Public Security Amir Ohana, the two Security Coordinators received their weapons back. In the afternoon, Regavim’s Director General and Spokesman traveled down south to meet Andrei and Bert and award them certificates to thank them for their service.

We are pleased and honored to have been able to help these two men, to correct a wrong, and to improve their personal safety, as well the security and safety of Israel’s southern residents.

Regavim meets the two security officers whose weapons were confiscated and later returned
Wednesday’s emergency Knesset meeting about recent attacks on Jewish communities in mixed cities

Today (26 May) we participated in an emergency Knesset hearing to discuss the explosion of lawlessness throughout Israel in recent weeks. The hearing, organized by Regavim and MK Amichai Chikli of Yemina, was attended by many Members of Knesset, local leaders, civil organizations, and residents of mixed cities.

In his remarks, Meir Deutsch, Regavim’s Director General, criticized the Police: “Even if we accept that the Police was surprised by these riots, we must not accept that they will be surprised by the next round [of violence].”

“For many years, Regavim has warned that failures in law enforcement against seemingly isolated and unrelated issues – such as illegal construction, protection rackets, drug trafficking, and violence and dangerous behavior on the country’s roads – results in an atmosphere of chaos and the erosion of governance. Where there is no governance, there is anarchy, and almost inevitably – full scale war that threatens the existence of the State.

“The anarchy that began in Jerusalem with lynches, rock and incendiary attacks and vandalism, spread to blocking of roads from the north to the south of the country, and then to attacks against Jewish residents in mixed neighborhoods [where Arabs and Jews live side-by-side]”.

Deutsch said that he came to Lod at the beginning of the riots, answering calls for help from regular citizens whose lives had been turned upside down and were now under threat. Regavim suspended normal operations to focus its energies and expertise on Lod, purchasing equipment to protect besieged residents and the volunteers who came to their aid, and setting up a ‘situation room’ to answer hundreds of calls for help and thousands of offers of assistance that poured in from around the country.

“Every IDF soldier knows that every training exercise, and certainly every operational incident, is immediately followed up with an internal investigation; this is how we learn, how we improve our preparedness and our operational capabilities. It’s how we learn the lessons necessary to do better next time. For the first 72 hours of the riots, the Police did not function, and Lod residents, whose lives were at serious risk, were left to protect themselves, by themselves. Then volunteers came from all over the country to help, and only then did the Police step in.

“Even if the Israel Police did not anticipate riots of this sort or this magnitude, what are they doing to learn the lessons that will prevent a recurrence? Where is the self-examination by the Police, the Minister of Public Security, the Prime Minister? As things now stand, the next outburst of violence is only a matter of time”.

Deutsch called on the government to formulate a comprehensive and adequately-funded plan to restore law and order and to bring governance to the Negev, the Gallil, and cities throughout Israel through equal and universal enforcement of the law.

Situation rooms set up by Regavim to aid the Jewish residents of Lod

Friends,

For over a week, the Jewish state has been under attack: Alongside incessant rocket fire by the Hamas terror group in Gaza, a wave of domestic Arab terror has swept across Israel. Years of poor governance and a lack of enforcement have served as a breeding ground for Arab riots, antisemitic pogroms and a wave of terror against Jews in mixed cities – from north to south.

The extent and magnitude of these events caused Regavim to suspend our other activities, and to focus our efforts on helping the residents of Lod , where Jewish residents have been victims of violent attacks, synagogues, schools, homes and vehicles have been burned, and public and private property destroyed.

Together with residents of Lod and My Israel (‘Yisrael Sheli’), Regavim quickly set up a ‘situation room’ that worked round the clock. Volunteers helped us respond to the urgent calls of residents of Lod, Ramle and other mixed cities, and to organize thousands of volunteers who called in and offered to help: medics, drivers, armed ex-officers, caregivers, & more.

Regavim purchased crucial equipment to support this important mission: cameras to document the situation, medical equipment, protective gear, computers for the situation room, and more.

Like everything we do at Regavim, none of this is possible without your support. We invite you to take part in covering the extensive costs, and to aid the ongoing Zionist struggle to insure a safe, secure Jewish future in our homeland.

To make an online, tax-deductible donation (US, UK, Canada, Israel) click here.

We pray and hope for quieter, more peaceful days.

Regavim: Protecting Israel’s Resources, Preserving Israeli Sovereignty

Following last night’s events in Tamra, an Arab town in northern Israel, the Regavim Movement applauds the decisive law enforcement activity by the Israel Police and calls on the leaders of the Israeli-Arab sector to support Israel Police efforts to eradicate organized crime.

In recent weeks, the Israel Police have carried out extensive – and long overdue – enforcement activity against organized crime operations and operatives, focusing on the scourge of illegal weapons in the Arab sector. After years of inaction that took a heavy toll on Arab society and both symbolized and contributed to the erosion of governance and Israeli sovereignty, these enforcement sweeps mark a change of course.

“The circumstances of the death of Ahmad Hijazi, who was killed last night during the exchange of fire between the police and criminal organizations, must be thoroughly investigated. That said, the complexity and difficulty of restoring law and order to Israeli Arab towns and villages should not be underestimated,” said Yakhin Zik, Director of Operations at Regavim. “The citizens of Israel who live in these communities continue to pay a high price for the years of inaction, and rooting out the criminal elements will be a long and challenging process.”

“The Regavim Movement has been monitoring and documenting the deterioration of the rule of law for years – and have often been harshly criticized for doing so. We are gratified that the Israeli government has begun to address the harsh reality that we have described for far too long.”

“Regavim applauds Minister of Internal Security Amir Ohana, and the Israel Police for their determined efforts in this Sisyphean task,” added Zik. “We hope that the important steps that have been taken thus far to restore governance and security will continue, and we call upon the leaders of Israel’s Arab sector and members of the Knesset to give their full support to the Israel Police efforts to battle organized crime in their community.”