“I understand the pain, but we must not take the law into our hands,” said National Security Minister and Otzma Yehudit party leader Itamar Ben-Gvir.
By World Israel News Staff
Otzma Yehudit lawmaker Zvika Fogel told Army Radio Monday morning that he agreed with the settlers who rampaged the Palestinian village of Huwara Sunday night, hours after the deadly terrorist attack that claimed the lives of Hillel Menachem Yaniv, 22, and his brother Yagel Yaakov, 19.
Cars and homes were torched and a number of residents were hurt. During clashes that ensued, one Palestinian was killed.
“What residents of Judea and Samaria did last night in Huwara was to create the strongest deterrent the State of Israel has had since Defensive Shield,” Fogel said in the interview, referring to the 2002 IDF counterterrorism operation across the Palestinian Authority.
“After murders like those yesterday, when the army doesn’t take action, villages need to burn,” he said.
After the terror attack, residents of Huwara and the surrounding area handed out sweets in celebration of the murder of the Yaniv brothers.
“Huwara should be shuttered and burned. That is what I want to see. That is the only way we will attain deterrence,” Fogel said.
“If we stop settling, we won’t gain sovereignty,” he added.
“I want to restore security to the people of the State of Israel. How do we do that? We have to get rid of the word ‘proportional;’ we have to rid ourselves of the lack will to use collective punishment just because it isn’t fitting according to all sorts of courts. It’s time for the gloves to come off.”
Davidi Ben Zion, deputy head of the Samaria Regional Council, concurred.
“Here in Huwara the blood of our children was spilled on the road. Huwara needs to be wiped out today. Enough talk about building and strengthening the settlements. The deterrence that was lost must return now, there’s no room for mercy,” he tweeted.
National Security Minister and Otzma Yehudit party leader Itamar Ben-Gvir, however, condemned the vigilante response.
“The terrorists must be crushed, and it is time to return to the targeted threats and eliminate the leaders of the inciting terrorist organization, he said. “I understand the pain, but we must not take the law into our own hands. The one who needs to deal with terrorism and deter it is the Israeli government and not the citizens.”
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and President Isaac Herzog called on Israelis not to take the law into their own hands.
“The IDF and the security forces are currently in pursuit of the murderer. We will find him, we will capture him and we will come to terms with him,” Netanyahu said.
“I ask even when the blood is hot and the spirits are hot – not to take the law into your own hands. I ask to let the IDF and the security forces do their job. I remind you that in the last few weeks they have eliminated dozens of terrorists and prevented dozens of terrorist attacks. Let the IDF complete the pursuit, do not take the law into your hands – and together we will defeat terrorism.”
Sunday’s terror attack was carried out just hours after Israeli officials took part in an emergency summit in Aqaba, Jordan, aimed at lower tensions in the region. It was the second time within weeks that a family lost two sons in a terror attack.
Eight-year-old Asher Paley and his six-year-old brother Yaakov were murdered along with newly-wed chassid Shlomo Alter Lederman by a terrorist who rammed into a bus stop in Jerusalem on February 10th. Another brother was lightly injured; their father was seriously hurt in the attack and remains in hospital.
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