Five people, all in a family, were killed Wednesday in a shooting in an Arab town in northern Israel, the latest in a wave of violence sweeping through Arab communities across the country.
Israeli police said in a statement that five people were shot dead in a house in Basmat Tab’un, a Bedouin town in northern Israel. The victims were identified by Israel’s state-owned Kan TV as two teen brothers, a woman in her 40s and her 25-year-old son, and another male relative.
The woman’s husband, a 49-year-old man, was moderately injured and needed hospital care.
The shooter or shooters fled the scene, prompting searches by the Israeli security forces.
“A red line was crossed here,” police chief Yaakov Shabtai told reporters at the scene. “The police will do everything to find the killers,” he added.
Previous incidents of such shootings have often revolved around conflicts between organized crime syndicates.
At least 188 individuals from the Arab community in Israel have been killed in violence since the beginning of 2023, according to the Abraham Initiatives, a group advocating for equal rights for the Arab minority in Israel. This number nearly doubles the count of victims during similar periods in previous years.
Arab leaders have accused Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s government of neglecting the fight against crime in Arab society.
Arab citizens of Israel frequently experience discrimination, poverty, neglected infrastructure, and high levels of crime, according to the Abraham Initiatives.