In an effort to succeed in the war on terrorism, the Knesset, Israel’s legislative body, approved a new law that would allow the justice system to mete out tougher punishments for terrorists and for those who enable or support terrorism.
The Knesset Constitution Committee on Monday approved the Fight Against Terrorism Act submitted by Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked, in preparation for its second and third reading in the plenum, and in the process annulling many of the emergency defense laws which have been in effect since the establishment of the state. The bill was approved in its first reading last September.
The new Fight Against Terrorism Act dispenses punishments from 25 years to life in prison to individuals who lead terrorist organizations. The law also sets mandatory punishments of 10 to 20 years, as well as fines, for using and transferring weapons.
Training terrorists is subject to 9 years in prison, while receiving the training is punishable by 7 years. Recruiting terrorists or providing transportation, food, clothing and money for terrorists is punishable by 5 years in prison. Voicing or publishing support for terrorists will be punished by 3 years.
According to the Shaked bill, the defense minister or the prime minister may issue a decree designating a terrorist organization based on a request from the head of the Shin Bet (Israel’s Security Agency), supported by the Attorney General. The security cabinet may do the same concerning a terror group organized abroad, based on the decision of an authorized foreign body, or the United Nations Security Council (UNSC).
Justice Minister Shaked issued a statement Monday, saying her bill will give security forces the power to fight terrorism while maintaining human rights.
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