(photo credit: MARC ISRAEL SELLEM/THE JERUSALEM POST)
President Reuven Rivlin called upon law enforcement authorities Tuesday night to continue to do what is necessary to return quiet to the streets of Jerusalem following three days of holiday violence that culminated with what he called a terrorist attack that killed Alexander Levlovitz.
Rivlin spoke Tuesday evening with acting police inspector- general Bentzi Sau and received an update from him about the efforts of the police and other security forces on the Temple Mount and throughout Jerusalem. Rivlin thanked the police for their hard work over the holiday to restore order to the city’s streets and sent deep condolences to Levlovitz’s family.
“On the evening of Rosh Hashana, Alexander Levlovitz - a family man, and a Jerusalemite - was murdered,” Rivlin said. “This bloody incident is further evidence that terrorism is terrorism - whether with stones or other weapons - and that we must act firmly and appropriately against terrorism.”
Agriculture Minister Uri Ariel said the security situation in the capital is the result of policies that were too easy on terrorists who threw stones and Molotov cocktails. He called upon Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Public Security Minister Gilad Erdan to enable security forces to take much more serious action against the assailants.
Ariel’s Bayit Yehudi colleague, MK Moti Yogev, called upon Netanyahu and Erdan to immediately appoint Sau as permanent police commissioner, rather than wait for Erdan’s appointee Gal Hirsch to pass the lengthy legal hurdles required for him to enter the job. Yogev said solutions to the challenges faced by police are on hold and cannot wait.
The Left was no less adamant than the Right that immediate action needed to be taken against Arab terrorism in the capital.
Opposition leader Isaac Herzog said Levlovitz’s death was heart-wrenching and expressed hope that Levlovitz would be the final victim of what he called “the war on the streets of Jerusalem."
“The government must make dealing with Jerusalem more of a national priority and take action to quell the anger, frustration and murderous motivations of our neighbors, which can explode like dynamite and threaten the peace and the wholeness of Jerusalem our capital,” Herzog said.
Yesh Atid chairman Yair Lapid said the attackers in Jerusalem must face a “heavy hand” from Israel. He pledged his party’s full support for Netanyahu to take “any action that could restore security to the residents of the State of Israel.”