Following the tragic murders of two young girls who were found dead on the same day, joining 22 another victims of domestic violence killed in 2018, three activists have decided that enough is enough.
The day after 13-year-old Sylvana Tsegai and 16-year-old Yara Ayoub were found dead, Stav Arnon, Ruty Klein and Dror Sadot set up a Facebook page calling on women and men across the country to join in a strike on Tuesday.
"We decided that if it doesn't happen now it will never happen," Arnon said. "24 women were murdered this year and that is the tip of the iceberg of violence against women in all parts of society."
The page they set up under the banner "I'm a women. I am striking," has already garnered the support of thousands of people.
"The cries of the women are buried underneath the silence of the government, which refuses to take responsibility and change the situation. Time after time they they bury programs [to fight violence against women], ignore the victims and leave half of the population unsafe," reads the call to strike. "We are in a state of emergency, this is the time, if we do not wake up now, we will never wake up."
"Murder is the extremity of the fact that we are harassed on the street, at work or at home - it is the tip of the iceberg of the wage gap, of offensive remarks, of objectification, of pushing women into low-paid professions, of women in prostitution, of gender-oriented education at schools," it continues. “This is the result of the violence and gender discrimination that we all feel every day and in every space. If you are a women - you're in. If you are a man - join us."
The strikers will demand the transfer of a 250 million NIS budget for an emergency program to prevent violence against women: for rehabilitation of victims of domestic violence; for education and public awareness efforts; and for a comprehensive policy change in the Israel Police in its approach to domestic violence.
There is an existing plan which has been approved by ministers by has not been budgeted.
On Thursday, Tesfabran Tesfatsion, who is suspect of raping and murdering his ex-girlfriend's daughter Tsegai, was set to be brought to the Tel Aviv Magistrate's court for a remand extension of 15 days. The suspect was arrested on Wednesday night near the Carmel Market; he has thus far remained silent and refused to respond to questioning.
This article has been adapted from its original source.
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