Two women were found dead at their homes on Monday in suspected murders by their partners.
In the southern city of Beersheba, police were called to an apartment building after receiving reports of a man on the roof apparently attempting to commit suicide.
After bringing the man down from the roof and treating him, police became suspicious he may have harmed his wife, and then found her dead with a head wound in the apartment.
Medical sources quoted by the Haaretz daily said the woman, 67, was likely struck with a blunt object and there were no gunshot or stab wounds on her body.
Hours earlier, 35-year-old Najah Mansour, a mother of four, was found dead in her home in the Kiryat Haim neighborhood of Haifa with signs of violence to her body.
Police said they arrested the victim’s partner, 28, on suspicion of murder.
קורבן הרצח בקריית חיים:נג'ח מנסור בת 35 pic.twitter.com/S1gCj3suZu
— |فرات نصار|פוראת נסאר|FURAT NASSAR (@nassar_furat) October 19, 2020
The woman’s neighbor told the newspaper that she lived alone, but he heard “shouting from the direction of her apartment” in the early hours of the morning. “Then it stopped,” the neighbor said.
The two women are at least the fourteenth and fifteenth murdered in Israel in 2020 by someone known to them, according to a tally by Haaretz.
Thirteen Israeli women were murdered in 2019 in such incidents. In 2018, 25 women were murdered by someone known to them, the highest number in years, prompting a string of protests and urgent calls for authorities to take action against the increasing incidence of violence against women in Israel.
Many of those women had filed police complaints prior to their deaths out of concern for their safety.
Hagit Pe’er, head of the Na’amat women’s advocacy group, said on Monday that the government was continuing in its failure to take action on the issue of violence against women.
“The wave of terrorism against women continues, the writing is on the wall and the government simply does not care. The best evidence of this is the plan to combat violence that was already approved in 2017 by the government, and to date has not been implemented,” Pe’er told Channel 12.
“Around 200,000 women in Israel live with violence — the coronavirus has turned their homes into prisons, the economic and psychological pressures are turning it into a life-threatening situation. We are tired of the lip service of elected officials after every such murder — what are you doing to prevent the next murder?” Pe’er said.
Police and social services organizations have reported a major rise in domestic violence complaints since the start of the coronavirus crisis.
Activists say most of the NIS 250 million ($71 million) approved in 2017 for national programs to prevent domestic violence has not yet been transferred to relevant authorities.