Talk about bad timing. Just three weeks ago, Israel renewed the mandate for TIPH to remain in Hebron for another six months. While over the past two weeks, two incidents of violence and vandalism by TIPH observers against Jews were exposed on video.
TIPH, the Temporary International Presence in Hebron, are a group of international observers who have been in Hebron since 1994. They focus on monitoring the IDF and the Jewish community of Hebron.
The first incident caught on security camera was of the TIPH legal advisor illegally touring inside the Jewish quarter. He toured the neighborhood with the fringe-leftwing NGO ‘Breaking the Silence’, while wearing a disguise. TIPH observers are not allowed inside the small Jewish neighborhood.
While there, the TIPH legal advisor purposely hit a 10-year-old Jewish boy in the head so hard that his hat was sent flying. The TIPH official had diplomatic immunity and police could not keep him in jail.
Prime Minister Netanyahu demanded the man leave the country.
The official, a Swiss citizen was sent back to his home country, while the Swiss Ambassador then blamed Jewish settler’s for their man hitting a Jewish child.
The second incident, just exposed this week on video, occurred a year ago, when a TIPH observer slashed tires of cars belonging to Jewish residents of Hebron.
When the TIPH commander was told by police that one of his people was caught on film vandalizing a Jewish vehicle and the police wanted to know who it was and speak with him, the commander delayed the police long enough for the man to flee Israel.
Jewish residents of Hebron say these are not isolated incidents, according to a report by Ariel Kahane in Yisrael HaYom.
TIPH observers, the Jewish community of Hebron says, are constantly violating their mandate.
The Hebron administration reports that TIPH observers are collaborating with the anarchist and BDS groups visiting in Hebron, passing information about IDF soldiers and the Jewish community to the Palestinian Authority, interfering with IDF operations, repeatedly entering areas forbidden for them to enter, and regularly harassing and even hitting Jewish children in Hebron.
On Tuesday, Prime Minister Netanayhu summoned the TIPH commander to clarify and explain the behavior of his TIPH observers in Hebron.
The Jewish community of Hebron has repeatedly demanded that the TIPH mandate not be renewed and all the observers be expelled.