Residents of Judea and Samaria staged several protests across the country on Thursday night, demanding a tougher government response to a recent wave of deadly Palestinian terrorist attacks.
The main demonstration took place in Jerusalem, across from the Prime Minister’s Residence. Hundreds of protesters blocked an intersection, calling on the government to do more to ensure their safety.
Participants included the families of Shira and Amichai Ish-Ran, who were wounded in a terrorist shooting near the settlement of Ofra in Samaria on Sunday evening. Shira was 30 weeks pregnant when she was shot and doctors performed an emergency C-section in an attempt to save her premature son, but ultimately the infant died, and was laid to rest on Wednesday.
Demonstrators in Jerusalem waved Israeli flags and chanted, “We won’t give away this land” and “The people of Israel aren’t afraid of a long road.”
Yossi Dagan, head of the Samaria Regional Council, told Israel Hayom Wednesday that “This government’s policy is containment – traditionally a left-wing government approach. This approach is no longer relevant. The government needs to wake up.”
“We aren’t willing to be sitting ducks,” Dagan said, adding that “we demand that checkpoints be reinstated immediately, and that [the government] resume retaliatory actions, as well as announcing the establishment of a new settlement for each murder victim, named after them. We demand an upswing in construction. Tired slogans aren’t enough. We want to see you [the government] smash the ‘terrorism authority’ known as the Palestinian Authority.”
Newly elected head of the Binyamin Regional Council Yisrael Gantz and head of the Beit El Local Council Shay Alon were also at the Jerusalem demonstration.
Alon declared that Israel would not “return to the accursed Oslo Accords.”
“We won’t go back to [bombed] buses and suicide bombings,” Alon said.
Gantz added: “We can’t let this go unnoticed, and we have no intention of letting this pass. We must take action.”
On Sunday, all local councils and schools in Judea and Samaria will be on strike as part of the protest campaign, and residents are planning more demonstrations.