Amid the uptick in gangland violence that included Saturday's shooting death of an alleged local criminal
at a crowded beachside complex in Tel Aviv, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu opened Sunday's weekly cabinet meeting saying the criminals – not the country's citizens -- need to run scared.
"We are determined to uproot this very grave phenomena," Netanyahu said of the underworld violence that this month alone has included seven separate car bombing incidents, killing three people.
"We give our full backing to the police to operate with existing means, and with new ones, against organized crime. Israeli citizens are not the ones who need to be concerned about walking freely on the streets, the members, patrons and 'soldiers' of the crime families need to be worried, and they need to be put soon," he said. .
Netanyahu also discussed the convening of the round of talks set to open this week in Geneva between the world powers and Iran on a long term agreement, saying that up until now Iran has only benefited -- without giving anything substantial in return – from the interim agreement reached in Geneva in November.
Netanyahu said that the sanctions relief the world gave Iran has already benefited the Iranian economy, even as Iran continues with its aggressive policies both within the country and abroad.
Inside Iran, Netanyahu said, the regime continues to execute innocent civilians, and abroad it continues to support the massacres taking place in Syria, provide terrorist organizations with advanced lethal weapons, and continue to call for Israel's destruction.
In parallel, Netanyahu said, Iran is continuing to develop advanced centrifuges.
"Iran is not prepared to give up even a single centrifuge," he said. "Israel's policies are clear and it is working on two tracks: First to reveal the unaltered and aggressive policies of Iran, and second to demand the dismantling of its enrichment capabilities. Iran does not need even one centrifuge for civilian nuclear purposes."
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