This issue of the Newsletter covers the period 22-25 February 2018. Israeli social media networks were taken up with several issues, including the appointment of new judges at the High Court and other courts across Israel.
Israeli Minister of Justice Ayelet Shaked announced she had completed the reformation of Israel’s High Court by appointing four new judges in 2017. Shaked said that the mission would be accomplished with the appointment two more judges. Israeli social media networks were extensively absorbed by these new appointments within the Judicial Authority, particularly at the High Court. Shaked made these appointments in order to change the face of the High Court.
This week too, the issue of African refugees also resurged, preoccupying Israeli social media platforms. Israel threatens to expel these refugees, but some Israelis are trying to prevent such an action. This attention stems from a demonstration organised by hundreds of people on Saturday. Other demonstrations and protests were also held by the refugees together with their supporters.
The extra-judicial killing of Omar al-Saradih also absorbed Israeli social media platforms this week. Surveillance cameras on a house in the Aqbat Jaber refugee camp, Jericho city, caught Israeli occupying soldiers savagely attacking Al-Saradih, causing his death a few hours later.
The surveillance cameras showed the Israeli occupying soldiers surprising and brutally attacking Al-Sharadih while he walking in an alley in the refugee camp.
The army claimed that Al-Saradih had attempted to carry out an operation against the soldiers, requiring that he be “neutralised”. A video clip that refutes the army’s narrative was released, giving rise to a division within Israeli social media networks.
Some social media activists supported the army’s narrative and launched an incitement campaign against Palestinians. Others were sceptic of the narrative and recalled to mind the story of the soldier Elor Azaria.
In addition, this issue of the Newsletter monitors the most viral video clips across Israeli social media networks. A video released and distributed on Saturday by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to Arabic media outlets was the most viewed and shared. In the video, Netanyahu welcomes the US Department of State’s decision to set the date for relocating the US embassy to Jerusalem in May 2018. The relocation coincides with the anniversary of the independence of Israel and Nakba of the Palestinian people.