The ban prohibits owning unmanned remote-controlled aerial devices, some of which can carry loads or cameras. The bans extends to both Israelis and Arabs.
Article By: Zvi Manasseh
The IDF has moved to curb ownership of unlicensed drones throughout Judea and Samaria. Israeli news media are reporting that the new ban will apply to all residents of Judea and Samaria, both Israelis and Arabs.
Another order banning drones from being flown in the area was signed several months ago. The IDF’s Central Command Commander Nadav Padan has now authorized a blanket unlicensed drone ownership ban all over Judea and Samaria.
Although the new ban has yet to be enforced, it is expected that after legal proceedings are wrapped up, the authorities will decide how to enforce the ban and the plan will be set in motion in a matter of weeks.
It would seem that recent events have intensified the IDF’s desire to maintain air dominance and prevent aerial reconnaissance, and surreptitious attacks on Israeli civilians.
In recent months, Israeli security has been challenged by a number of incidents involving drones and other flying objects.
Recently Israeli residents and IDF forces stationed on the Gaza perimeter have come under a novel form of attack from Hamas, as kites bearing Swastikas and petrol bombs have been sent into Israeli territory. Last week, a fire broke out in an Israeli wheat field near Kibbutz Be’eri outside the Gaza Strip, ignited by a kite carrying a canister of burning liquid. According to the local fire department, this had been the fifth such instance in as many days.
A few weeks ago, a Gaza-based journalist/Hamas officer was shot after operating a drone close to Israeli soldiers. The IDF explained that it cannot tolerate with foreign minister Avigdor Liberman warning protesters, “Anyone who operates drones above IDF soldiers needs to understand he’s putting himself in danger”, and explained that, “I don’t know who is or isn’t a photographer”.
In February, an Iranian drone penetrated Israeli territory adjacent to the Syrian border. It was tracked for several minutes before being shot down by an Israeli-operated Apache helicopter. Israel later revealed that the drone was carrying explosives.
The incident sparked a minor cross-border flare-up, culminating in the Israeli air force striking at several Syrian military facilities. During the aerial raids, an Israeli F-16 was downed by a Syrian anti-aircraft battery, crashing to earth in Israel, prompting further Israeli retaliatory raid against Syria’s anti-aircraft systems. Both Israeli pilots ejected.