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Tel Aviv deputy mayor, family attacked by Eritrean youths

"If we don't deal with the problem of infiltrators, we will experience the scenes we experienced on Shabbat for years to come," said Haim Goren.

Eritrean asylum seekers who oppose the regime in Eritrea and pro regime activists clash with Israeli police in South Tel Aviv, Sept. 2, 2023. Photo by Omer Fichman/Flash90.
Eritrean asylum seekers who oppose the regime in Eritrea and pro regime activists clash with Israeli police in South Tel Aviv, Sept. 2, 2023. Photo by Omer Fichman/Flash90.

A gang of Eritrean boys attacked Tel Aviv Deputy Mayor Haim Goren and his family on Tuesday night, he announced after filing a police complaint.

The incident occurred days after rival factions of Eritrean migrants clashed on the streets of South Tel Aviv, leaving more than 170 people injured, including 49 police officers. Israel has placed 53 of the rioters in administrative detention.

“If we don’t deal with the problem of infiltrators, we will experience the scenes we experienced on Shabbat for years to come,” said Goren, who also holds the city’s security portfolio.

Separately on Tuesday, the Eritrean Ministry of Information accused Israel’s intelligence agency, Mossad, of being behind violent riots that have broken out in a number of countries around the world in recent months.

“Shocked by the non-white struggle of the Eritrean people, the major intelligence agencies (especially Mossad) are trying to disrupt the ranks of the Eritrean people,” the statement said.

The Eritrean Embassy in Tel Aviv also published a statement on Tuesday attempting to explain how the events unfolded on Saturday, claiming that the Israel Police had granted a “motley group of hooligans” permission to hold a protest and saying that they conveyed to the police credible information that the group was planning violence and vandalism.

The embassy also accused many of the protesters of not being Eritrean.

Human rights groups describe Eritrea as one of the most authoritarian countries in the world since breaking away from neighboring Ethiopia three decades ago. It is ruled by President Isaias Afwerki. Some have fled from the country’s mandatory military conscription, with others leaving to seek out economic advantages.

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