Netanyahu to convene emergency meeting on harsher punishment for stone-throwing

Announcement of ministerial session comes amid high tension in Jerusalem over the Jewish New Year.

September 14, 2015 20:49
1 minute read.
Wadi Joz

Palestinians hurl stones during clashes with Israeli police in east Jerusalem's Wadi al-Joz neighbourhood [File]. (photo credit: REUTERS)


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Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has called to convene an emergency ministerial meeting after the end of the Rosh Hashana holiday on Tuesday evening in light of recent violent incidents involving rioters who throw stones and firebombs in and around Jerusalem.

A statement from the Prime Minister's Office said the premier, "sees the severity of the throwing of rocks and Molotov cocktails at Israeli citizens, and plans to fight the phenomenon by all means, including making punishments more severe and enforcement."

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Defense Miniser Moshe Ya'alon, Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked, Transportation Minister Israel Katz, Public Security Minister Gilad Erdan, Attorney General Yehuda Weinstein, members of the State Attorney's office, and other security officials were expected to take part in the meeting.

The premier's announcement came after an Israeli motorist identified as Jerusalem resident Alexander Levlovitch, 64, died Monday morning after his car lost control overnight in Jerusalem in what police say may have been a stone-throwing attack.

In a separate event on Monday morning in the capital, a police officer was lightly injured when rioters pelted him with stones in a second day of rioting at the Temple Mount.

Police also arrested several Palestinians who they said had thrown rocks and iron bars toward officers at the Temple Mount compoudn near the al-Aksa mosque.

Following the disturbances, quiet was restored to the area and Jewish visitors and tourists began to enter the site. Police said that around 500 people visited on Monday morning. 

On Sunday, Israeli security forces raided the plaza outside al-Aksa Mosque in what they said was a bid to head off Palestinian attempts to disrupt visits by Jews and foreign tourists on the eve of the Jewish New Year.

Reuters contributed to this report.

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