Why Eritrean Migrants Rioted in Tel Aviv, and Why It Matters for Israel https://mosaicmagazine.com/picks/israel-zionism/2023/09/why-eritrean-migrants-rioted-in-tel-aviv-and-why-it-matters-for-israel/

September 5, 2023 | Jerusalem Post
About the author:

The southern part of Tel Aviv is home to a large population of migrants from Eritrea—many of whom entered Israel illegally. When, on Saturday, the Eritrean embassy in that city held an event celebrating a national holiday, a large crowd of local Eritreans gathered in protest. They were met by a number of their compatriots who support the East African country’s repressive regime, and a violent confrontation ensued. The editors of the Jerusalem Post comment:

The scene resembled an urban battlefield, according to eyewitness reports. . . .  At least 160 people were injured in consequent clashes between supporters and opponents of the Eritrean government as the regime’s opponents tried for hours to prevent the event from going ahead. Some 50 police officers were wounded in the violence. Police Commissioner Kobi Shabtai said officers were forced to use stun grenades and live fire when they came under attack. . . . Local businesses were burned and looted, residents were trapped in their homes unable to risk going out, and public property was destroyed.

This was not a spontaneous riot. Both the opponents and the regime supporters were dressed for the protests, wearing blue and red T-shirts, respectively.

Much of the impetus for the government’s proposed [judicial] reform stems from the High Court’s overturning of Knesset laws designed to handle the issue of illegal migrants.

[Prime Minister Benjamin] Netanyahu is correct in saying that the violence is absolutely unacceptable—and ultimately the blame lies with the protesters themselves.

Read more on Jerusalem Post: https://www.jpost.com/opinion/article-757434