Hebron Jewish community calls on Netanyahu to throw out international observers

Members of Hebron’s Jewish community called on the prime minister to remove international observers after security-camera footage showed the violent behavior of members of the Temporary International Presence in Hebron.


Following the release of security-camera footage showing a member of the Temporary International Presence in Hebron (TIPH) observer mission slashing the tires on the car of a local Jewish resident of Hebron, the leaders of the Hebron Jewish community called on Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to throw TIPH out of the country.

While this event took place nearly a year ago and was only released to the press on Tuesday, a second video capturing footage of an incident from just several weeks ago documents another member of TIPH on a tour of Hebron led by the Breaking the Silence organization, slapping a local 10-year-old Jewish boy. As a result, the TIPH observer, a Swiss national, was asked to leave the country by Israel’s Foreign Ministry.

Netanyahu did, in fact, demand on Tuesday that the head of TIPH report to the Foreign Ministry for clarifications about the incident, but Hebron leaders say a meeting isn’t enough.

A statement by the group calls on the prime minister (who also serves as Israel’s foreign minister) “to inform TIPH, that their mandate has ended, and they should be expelled from the country.”

The statement adds that “Hebron has no place for a provocative hostile group whose actions disturb the peace and harm the well-being of the residents of Hebron. The ‘temporary’ mandate of this force must end.”

TIPH’s website mission says its purpose since it was created in 1997—with observers from five contributing countries—is to support Israel and the Palestinian Authority “in their efforts to improve the situation in Hebron and to create a sense of security for the Palestinians in Hebron.