In a statement released by the Israeli police on Sunday, it was announced that the Israeli occupying forces would be arresting Palestinian demonstrators that have participated in protests and sit-ins in the last few weeks following the Al-Aqsa attacks and the ensuing airstrikes that killed over 200 Palestinians, in Gaza.
The “operation law and order”, as described by the police, will continue the wave of over 1,500 racially motivated arrests that have taken place in the last two weeks. These operations will deploy “all units” of security forces, in order to crack down on demonstrators in majority Palestinian towns.
The Palestinian Prisoner Society stated on Monday that 41 Palestinains have been arrested in overnight raids. The Israeli newspaper Yedioth Ahronoth reported that police had drawn up a list of 500 Palestinian-Israeli “criminal elements” who would be arrested in connection with demonstrations.
The announcement was met with criticism from human rights activists who have condemned this measure as a punitive, revenge tactic designed to terrorize Palestinians into submission. In a statement sent to Al-Jazeera, Hassan Jabareen, the general director of Adalah, the Legal Center for Arab Minority Rights in Israel, described the campaign as an ethnically motivated “war” against Palestinian citizens of Israel and East Jerusalem, calling for a “rapid response” from all Palestinian political movements, parties, and from the High Follow-up Committee for Arab Citizens of Israel.