Government said considering delaying elections in 12 Arab local councils

Police at the scene of a quadruple homicide in the northern town of Abu Snan, August 22, 2023. (Shir Torem/Flash90)
Police at the scene of a quadruple homicide in the northern town of Abu Snan, August 22, 2023. (Shir Torem/Flash90)

The government is weighing delaying elections in 12 Arab local councils amid fears that organized crime gangs could try and take control, Channel 12 reports.

The unprecedented step was discussed at a meeting of the ministerial committee aimed at combating the spiraling crime in the Arab community after a series of killings of local politicians.

According to the report, the fears were raised by the Shin Bet and the police.

The Attorney General asked for further information to formulate a response to the proposal, the report said. It also noted that several ministers asked for a list of local councils that would be affected, but police chief Kobi Shabtai declined to respond.

The committee recently tasked the Shin Bet security service with assisting police operations in combating some crime in the Arab community, specifically in all matters related to safeguarding the municipal elections.

The Shin Bet has identified 15 to 20 Arab regional councils where there are threats to candidates, voters or public officials from crime families, the Kan public broadcaster reported at the time.

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