Border Cops Make Residents Feel Safe on TA Beaches

Tel Aviv residents strolling along Herbert Samuel Promenade last week could not help but notice the large Border Police presence. Border policemen were patrolling the length of the beachfront promenade, on foot and in cars.

The Sapir Border Police unit was stationed there by Israeli Police Commissioner David Cohen, in light of the increase in violence over the past few weeks, in order to make residents feel safe

On Tuesday morning, Cohen visited the promenade with senior Tel Aviv police officers and the Border Police commander.

That strip of coastline, parallel to the city center, generally falls under the jurisdiction of the Yarkon region police. But for now, border policemen have been tasked with stemming hooliganism and preventing criminal activity, which usually rises sharply during the summer.

Border Police Superintendent Meir Eliahu, head of the Sapir unit, said Tuesday that his unit would be working both openly and undercover.

"The police will patrol with small and large firearms in plain sight, to give the public a sense of security, and to deter would-be criminals. Undercover, they will work to find offenders and catch them in the act," he said.

The unit scored a success in the very first days of its operation: two residents of the Palestinian Authority approached undercover police near Jerusalem Beach in an attempt to enlist them to help steal bags. They were arrested when they tried to snatch a purse from a woman walking on the promenade.