Israeli policeman killed during Bedouin village demolition

Israeli policeman killed during Bedouin village demolition

Erez Levi is killed by a 50-year old Arab man who rammed his Jeep into a group of officers during a violent clash

Stephen is the Jewish News' Foreign Editor

An Israeli policeman has been killed during the demolition of a Bedouin village in the south of the country after an Arab Israeli man rammed his Jeep into a group of officers, before being shot dead. A second Palestinian protester was killed in the ensuing clash.

Policeman Erez Levi, 34, was killed by 50-year old Yaakub Abu al-Qiyan during violent scenes, with witnesses saying the Arab villager had been seeking to leave and only lost his cool when he was shot at by an officer. Amnesty International has called for an investigation into the incident in the village of Umm al-Hiran.

The leader of the Arab Israeli contingent in the Israeli parliament, Ayman Odeh, was injured in the clashes, and later blamed Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu for purposefully enflaming tensions, calling it “a disgrace”.

However Odeh was accused of the same by Public Security Minister Gilad Erdan, who accused the head of the Joint List of “inciting violence”. Erdan added: “[Odeh] contributed to a very serious event that may also have criminal implications for him.”

However Palestinian campaigners said responsibility lay with the police for their over-zealous methods. A spokesman for Adalah, which represents Arab Israelis, said: “The police are light on the trigger when it comes to Arab citizens.”

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