Israel Police Beefs Up Security Near Muslim Sites Following Mosque Attack

Commissioner Yohanan Danino says police will up patrols, raise alertness levels, and map specific areas that are under higher risk of attack, with an emphasis on mixed cities.

Israel police called for reinforcements near Muslim holy sites, Monday, in light of a suspected “price tag” attack by right-wing extremists on a mosque in the Upper Galilee early Monday morning.

In the wake of the attack, Israel Police Commissioner Yohanan Danino announced that police forces will beef up patrols, raise alertness levels, assess intelligence more frequently, and map specific areas that are under a higher risk of attack, with an emphasis on mixed cities.

Israeli Arabs-police clashes - Kaminsky - Oct 3, 2011
Yaron Kaminsky

Earlier Monday, 300 Israeli Arabs clashed with local security forces in the Upper Galilee on Monday in response to the attack.

According to Israel Police, residents of the Bedouin Arab village of Tuba-Zangariyya began marching to the nearby town of Rosh Pina, while hurling rocks at security forces and burning tires.

Police forces responded to the clashes by firing tear gas and stun grenades at the protesters.

The mosque was set on fire Sunday night, and its entire interior went up in flames, causing heavy damage, including to holy books inside.

Graffiti with the words “price tag” was found on the wall of the mosque. Israel Police said they have arrested several suspects involved in the mosque arson, but did not disclose any details.

Northern District Police Commander Major-General Roni Atia who was on the scene described the incident as “very serious in the context of ‘price tag’ attacks.” Atia has set up a special team to investigate the incident and bring the perpetrators to justice.