Erdan inaugurates first police station in Hebron settlement since Israel’s founding, June 20, 2018. (photo: Public Security Minister Spokesman)
Internal Security and Strategic Affairs Minister Gilad Erdan last week inaugurated a new police station in the heart of Jewish Hebron, the first such station to have opened in the city since the establishment of the State of Israel in 1948.
The move comes on the backdrop of numerous recent Arab terror attacks in the city. In the past month alone, a terrorist attempted to drive a bobcat tractor into civilian and military pedestrians, and a number of bombs were hurled at Israeli troops guarding the nearby Tomb of the Patriarchs, deemed Judaism’s second holiest site. Earlier this month, the bomb squad detonated another improvised explosive device containing gas canisters which was discovered close to the Tomb of the Patriarchs.
The station will serve the approximately 30,000 residents living in the Hebron Regional Council and Kiryat Arba area, providing a swift response to non-military matters. Beforehand, the nearest permanent police presence had been in the central Gush Etzion area, close to Efrat.
Speaking at the station’s inauguration ceremony next to the Tomb of the Patriarchs, Minister Erdan pointed out, “Only tonight an explosive device was thrown at security guards in the Tomb of the Patriarchs.”
“In the hills around us where our forefathers once lived, the most natural and obvious thing happens today – a permanent police presence that includes the entire range of police services to the public, and it is clear to all that where there is a strong police presence, there is tranquility, law, and sovereignty,” Erdan added.
Bus Stop in Honor of Officer Killed in Action
Not long afterwards, the Hebron community unveiled a new bus stop in honor of Lieutenant David Golnovitz, who was killed last year during an army drill in the city. The bus station was erected where Golnovitz fell after a bullet was accidentally fired.
Golnovitz’s father, Shimon, explained that he had asked the local community what would be the best way to commemorate his son in a useful way, and was told that a bus stop would be very much appreciated as little children and soldiers wait in the searing heat for buses there.
(Pictures courtesy of the family)
To this day, many thousands of Jews visit Hebron each year to make a pilgrimage to the first place documented where Jews owned part of the Promised Land. Following a massacre in the city in 1929, the Jewish community of Hebron was forced to flee and now less than 1000 Jews live in the city. Those Jews who have returned to the city need a 24-hour army presence to guard them from Arab terrorists.