Photo Credit: Anan Maalouf via Wikimedia
MK Ayman Odeh

Joint Arab List leader Ayman Odeh called for an end to the “crime epidemic in Arab society” in a statement Saturday on the Twitter social networking site after four people were murdered within a 24 hour period this weekend.

“The elections are over but the crime epidemic in Arab society continues,” Odeh wrote. “Four are murdered in a day. This is the first issue we will address. We have no choice but to bring security back to the streets and live in a society without weapons.”

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Two people were shot and killed during a wedding early Saturday morning in northern Israel, in the Bedouin town of Basmat Tab’un. Just hours earlier, an Imam was murdered in his car in a different town, and another man was shot to death in a third village.

Guns are traditionally fired into the air at Bedouin weddings and often at other Arab weddings as well, as a form of celebration following the ceremony.

There has long been a problem with illegal firearms in Arab towns and villages, particularly when a blood feud or honor killing is involved.

Since the beginning of this calendar year, 59 Israeli Arabs have been murdered, including 10 women. A year earlier, in 2018, a total of 76 Israeli Arabs were murdered, including 14 women.

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Hana Levi Julian is a Middle East news analyst with a degree in Mass Communication and Journalism from Southern Connecticut State University. A past columnist with The Jewish Press and senior editor at Arutz 7, Ms. Julian has written for Babble.com, Chabad.org and other media outlets, in addition to her years working in broadcast journalism.
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