New footage released Friday morning, September 24, purports to show what culminated in a drive-by shooting in Haifa the previous night in which a young man was killed, amidst the prolonged wave of crime and violence wracking Arab-Palestinian community in Israel.
The victim, who was shot while driving through Haifa, was identified as 30-year-old Hosam Othman, a resident of the northern city. In the video, apparently shot from a camera positioned in his car’s rear window, the victim’s white car is seen stopping at an intersection and a black car that had been driving behind it suddenly pulls up alongside it to take aim.
The deadly shooting in Haifa came after several other Arab citizens of Israel were killed over the past week, sparking a campaign dubbed #Arab_Lives_Matter on social media. “We continue losing our boys and the government is carrying on normally. No words. #Arab_Lives_Matter,” tweeted Hadash MK Ayman Odeh, the head of the Joint List and a resident of Haifa, following the shooting.
Odeh pointed out that there have been 90 Arab murders this year in Israel. “They all have names and faces,” he said. “The government can and must end this debacle and make a decision to end the crime and the murders immediately. We cannot wait for the next victim.” In 2020, 96 Arab Israelis were killed in communal violence, by far the highest annual toll in recent memory.
The hashtag #Arab_Lives_Matter, alongside its Arabic and Hebrew translations, has been gaining traction on Twitter, Facebook and other social media platforms, targeted at raising awareness of the incessant shootings and violent deaths that are plaguing Arab communities in Israel. “Should have been obvious that ALL lives matter, including Arab lives, but apparently it is not,” posted last week Mira Awad, singer, actress, songwriter and Hadash supporter, after three Arab citizens were killed in the previous 24 hours in shootings across the country. “And here we are, yet another murdered Arab citizen of Israel.”