On Sunday, Israel’s new far-right Minister of National Security, Itamar Ben-Gvir, announced that he had instructed the police to remove Palestinian flags from public places.
- Itamar Ben-Gvir, the new Minister of National Security for Israel, has directed police to remove Palestinian flags from public areas.
- However, police and soldiers are authorized to remove Palestinian flags if they perceive a threat to public order.
- He ordered their removal because waving the Palestinian flag is “supporting terrorism.”
It is not illegal to display Palestinian flags in Israel, but police and soldiers have the right to remove them if they deem that there is a threat to public order.
As a minister overseeing the police, Ben-Gvir, who heads an ultranationalist party in Benjamin Netanyahu’s new government, appears to take a hard line in ordering their removal.
The incident follows last week’s release of a Palestinian prisoner convicted of kidnapping and murdering an Israeli soldier in 1983, who waved a Palestinian flag while receiving a hero’s welcome in his village in northern Israel.
In a statement, Ben-Gvir indicated that waving the Palestinian flag constituted support for terrorism.
“It is not acceptable that lawbreakers wave terrorist flags and incite and encourage terrorism, so I have ordered the removal of flags that support terrorism from public spaces and to stop incitement against Israel,” Ben-Gvir said.
The Arab population in Israel makes up approximately a fifth of the people, most of whom are descendants of Palestinians who remained within the newly established state following its independence in 1948.
With many identifying as or associated with Palestinians, they have long debated their place in Israeli politics, balancing their Palestinian heritage with their Israeli citizenship.
Why did Itamar Ben-Gvir order the removal of Palestinian flags from public spaces?
To stop “incitement against Israel,” Ben-Gvir ordered the removal of the Palestinian flag.
Is it illegal to display Palestinian flags in Israel?
Palestinian flags are not explicitly prohibited by Israeli law, but police and soldiers have the authority to remove them.
Who is Itamar Ben-Gvir?
In Benjamin Netanyahu’s new government, Itamar Ben-Gvir heads an ultranationalist party. He oversees the police as minister.