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Shin Bet head: Dangerous rise in online incitement, violent discourse must stop

Head of the Shin Bet security service Nadav Argaman attends the Defense and Foreign Affairs Committee meeting at the Knesset on November 6, 2018. (Hadas Parush/Flash90)
Head of the Shin Bet security service Nadav Argaman attends the Defense and Foreign Affairs Committee meeting at the Knesset on November 6, 2018. (Hadas Parush/Flash90)

In an extraordinary statement, the head of the internal Shin Bet security service Nadav Argaman warns rising incitement and hate speech on social media could lead to some groups or individuals to take violent action and even harm others.

“We have recently identified a serious rise and radicalization in violent and inciting discourse, specifically on social media,” Argaman says, including calls for violence and physical harm.

“This discourse may be interpreted among certain groups or individuals as one that allows violent and illegal activity and could even lead to harm to individuals,” he says.

Argaman said politicians, public opinion leaders, religious figures and educators across the political spectrum must speak out clearly against violence.

“It is our duty to come out with a clear and decisive call for an immediate cessation of the inciting and violent discourse. The responsibility for restraining the discourse rests on the shoulders of us all,” he adds.

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