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Ministers vote on bill to compensate Israeli victims of terrorism abroad

March 18, 2017 22:47

Entitlement given only if attackers specifically targeted Israelis, Jews • ‘This is our obligation as the Jewish state.’

FLOWERS AND PICTURES of the victims of a terrorist attack are placed near the entrance to Istanbul’s

FLOWERS AND PICTURES of the victims of a terrorist attack are placed near the entrance to Istanbul’s Reina nightclub on January 17. Israeli Lian Nasser was among the slain.. (photo credit:REUTERS)

The Ministerial Committee for Legislation will vote Sunday on whether to support a bill that would allow Israelis who were wounded or died in a terrorist attack abroad to be recognized by the state and be entitled to compensation.

The measure, which seeks to amend the Benefits for Victims of Hostilities Law (1970), already passed its preliminary and first readings in the Knesset plenum.

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“Because of the extra funding that was added to the bill throughout the process, the ministers asked to vote on it again,” the legislation’s sponsor, MK Haim Jelin (Yesh Atid), told The Jerusalem Post.

“Between the readings, the ministers added an article to the bill saying that all victims of terrorism attacks abroad in the past five years will receive retroactive compensation.

Now they need to approve it one again before it goes to the final readings.”

If it becomes law, a committee in the Defense Ministry would be established to examine the cases of Israelis who were wounded or killed by terrorist abroad and recognize them as victims, even if the attack was not aimed specifically against Israeli citizens or the Jewish people.

Currently, an attack is only recognized under the Benefits for Victims of Hostilities Law if it is directed against Israel, if its secondary target is Israel or if it is aimed against the Jewish people.

Jelin said that two terrorist attacks in late 2016 made him realize that such legislation needs to be passed.

“After the attacks in Berlin [in which Dalia Elyakam, from Herzliya was killed along with 11 others in a truck ramming] and in Istanbul [in which Lian Nasser, from Tira, was killed at a nightclub, along with 38 others, on New Year’s Eve], I understood that no one is there to assist the families,” Jelin said.

“There many types of insurance that can cover extreme sport accidents or car accidents, but nothing covers terrorist attacks, especially when it comes to those who are not targeting Jews or Israelis.”

Jelin stressed that the state should be there for the victims.

“This is our obligation as the Jewish state to demonstrate mutual responsibility and help one another.”

Upon receiving the approval of the ministers, the bill will be voted upon in second and third (final) readings in the Knesset plenum.
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  • Anti-Semitism
  • Terrorism
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