Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu vowed to act forcefully against Palestinian terror and rioting while restoring peace to the Temple Mount.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said on Sunday morning that he was determined to fight the latest wave of Palestinian terror in Jerusalem. “Whoever tries to attack us, we will hurt him,” the Israeli leader asserted.
“Stones and firebombs are deadly weapons; they kill and have killed,” he stated at the beginning of weekly cabinet meeting.
“Therefore, in recent days we have changed the open-fire orders for police in Jerusalem. Already over the weekend they used the new measures under the new orders and immediately hit those throwing stones and firebombs.”
Israel’s government has also begun advancing legislation to impose fines on the parents of minors who throw stones and firebombs, he added.
“No less important in my view is the advancing of legislation to set minimum punishments for those who throw stones, firebombs and fireworks. We cannot accept the principle that in Jerusalem our capital, or in any part of the State of Israel, in the Galilee or in the Negev, that people will organize terrorism and begin to stone passing cars or throw stones and murder people. This norm will not be established here; rather, an opposite norm will – we will act against you and stop you, and we will punish you with the full force of the law,” Netanyahu vowed.
He also expressed deep appreciation for the Israeli police. They are “fighting against these phenomena under conditions that are not simple… I was impressed by their determination and their readiness to act, and I thought that it would be proper for the government to allow the police to act in order to protect Israel’s citizens.”
Ramallah is to Blame for the Violence
He reiterated Israel’s commitment to maintaining the status quo on the Temple Mount. “We are not altering the status quo. Elements that incite with baseless, wild provocations – to the effect that Israel is trying to prevent Muslim prayer on the Temple Mount or wants to destroy the mosques, or other wild things that are being said – it is they who are inciting. This incitement comes from the Muslim Brotherhood, the Islamic Movement in Israel, Hamas, and – to our chagrin – with the active participation of the Palestinian Authority.”
He said blame for the violence should be placed not on Jerusalem, but on “Ramallah, Gaza and agitators in the Galilee” as well as on “Turkey, from which incitement issues forth on a daily, even hourly, basis.”
The terrorists are using not only rocks and firebombs, but also explosives and pipe bombs on the Temple Mount, he pointed out. “Explosives in Al-Aqsa Mosque – that is changing the status quo.”
He called on Israel’s leaders to unite behind the government’s “determined and responsible action on the Temple Mount, in Jerusalem and throughout the State of Israel. By taking determined action over time, we will restore quiet.”
Following the cabinet meeting, the prime minister met with the defense, public security and justice ministers as well as representatives of the attorney general’s office and the security forces to discuss the latest developments and new deterrence measures.
By: Max Gelber, United with Israel