Two minors were arrested Monday at the IDF’s enlistment office outside of Tel Aviv for allegedly spray-painting “price tag” on a sign displaying the national anthem, Hatikvah.
The teens stood accused of scrawling the term “price tag” — a term associated with violence or vandalism against the IDF or Palestinians for in retribution for government moves — on the back of a sign bearing the lyrics of the Israeli national anthem at the Tel Hashomer army base on Sunday morning.
The two, both residents of West Bank settlements, were interrogated by the IDF’s military police and jailed, Maariv reported. In the coming days, the military prosecutor will decide whether to take the two teens to trial.
It remains unclear why the two gained entry to the army base. Reports from the investigation quoted by the paper indicated the two had refused to enlist for ideological reason, and were at the induction center in order to submit additional details to military enlistment personnel.
Sources close to the suspects told Maariv that they had actually enlisted and arrived at the base daily as they waited for an assignment.
Price tag attacks, acts of vandalism usually performed against Arab property and typically carried out by Jewish nationalists in retribution for government moves, have become increasingly common in recent years. Mosques, churches, dovish Israeli groups and Israeli military bases have been targeted in such attacks.
Last week a group of Israeli settlers were captured in a West Bank village while allegedly en route to carrying out a price tag attack against the residents of Qusra, near Nablus.
In late December, a home and three vehicles in a West Bank refugee camp were vandalized, in a suspected price tag attack related to the release of 26 Palestinian prisoners and ongoing peace talks.