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Jerusalem man detained for threatening Netanyahu on social media

“We will rebel against [Benjamin] Netanyahu and his government and prepare a guillotine for their supporters,” the man wrote in one post.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu leads a Cabinet meeting in Jerusalem, May 7, 2023. Photo by Yonatan Sindel/Flash90.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu leads a Cabinet meeting in Jerusalem, May 7, 2023. Photo by Yonatan Sindel/Flash90.

Police detained a Jerusalem man for questioning on Tuesday on suspicion of inciting violence against Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

The Lahav 433 unit tasked with investigating nationalistic crimes opened an investigation into the suspect in response to threatening comments that he posted on Monday to social media.

“We will rebel against Netanyahu and his government and prepare a guillotine for their supporters,” the man wrote in one post.

In another post, he wrote: “Rebel against Netanyahu who will meet his end under the guillotine.”

Netanyahu in February criticized what he said was a “growing wave” of threats directed at him and other officials, after a leader of the anti-government protests appeared to call for his assassination.

“It seemed that all boundaries had been crossed by threats against elected officials and myself, but this is not the case, because we have now heard and seen an explicit threat to murder the prime minister of Israel,” said Netanyahu in a statement.

He spoke after former Israel Air Force pilot Ze’ev Raz wrote on Facebook: “If a prime minister rises up and assumes dictatorial powers, he is a dead man, it’s that simple. … There’s an obligation to kill him.”

Alon Levavi, a senior research associate at the MirYam Institute and a former Israel Police deputy commissioner, told JNS in March that warning signs were mounting over the dangerous effects that the ever-coarsening political rhetoric in the country could have on society.

“Regarding incitement, I think the writing is on the wall. Attempts to harm public figures on either the left or right could just be a matter of time,” Levavi cautioned.

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