Jerusalem (Jan. 27)
– A vigilant public and successful preventive measures reduced terrorist acts and sabotage by half last year compared to the previous year, Shaul Givoli, commander of the civil guard, reported at a press conference here today. He said the police recorded 70 cases of sabotage in 1980 as against 136 in 1979. Only one person died as a result of those acts last year compared to 19 fatalities the year before.
Givoli credited the growing awareness by the public of terrorist devices, the success of the security forces in preventing the establishment of terrorist cells in the occupied territories and the growing tension between Jordan and Syria. He said that last year, terrorists did not dare enter Israeli cities. Most explosive devices were planted at roadsides in rural areas, mainly at locations where soldiers wait to hitch rides.
Givoli explained that the civil guard is based almost entirely on a force of some 87,000 volunteers who spend about four hours a month patrolling neighborhoods on the alert for possible terrorist activity.