Police: Recognition of Palestinian State Could Ignite Violent Protests

Incoming commissioner Yohanan Danino says anti-Israel campaigns published on the internet, Facebook are changing the ways in which Israel must defend its sovereignty.

Israel is preparing itself for large-scale violent unrest, Police Commissioner Yohanan Danino said on Sunday, adding that social networks such as Facebook have changed the type of threats to Israel's sovereignty.

Israeli officials have voiced their concern that a plan by the Palestinian Authority to seek United Nations recognition of Palestinian independence would ignite West Bank violence, as well as bring about unrest in Israeli Arab communities.

Nakba rally Gaza 17.5.11 AP

Earlier this month, during the annual Nakba Day, which commemorates what Palestinians see as the "disaster" of Israel's establishment, more than 100 infiltrators crossed the Syria-Israel cease-fire line at Majdal Shams, and a total of 14 infiltrators were killed on the Syrian and Lebanese borders

Speaking at a conference at the southern city of Eilat, Danino predicted that the various proclamations of a non-violent struggle would soon give way to violent protests as soon as an independent Palestinian state would be announced.

"The areas of friction between the [Israeli Jewish and Arab] populations, the attempts to infiltrate borders, calls published on the internet and on Facebook pages to defy Israel's sovereignty, all put forth a new reality," the incoming police chief said.

Danino said that Israel Police, as "a security establishment, must anticipate [that reality's] probabilities, its various scenarios, and prepare accordingly."

"This is a national task, a national challenge. Israel Police cannot rely on defensive measures alone, it will have to act as an offensive initiator," the police chief said, adding that the police would have, "consequently, to work according to a different template."