(photo credit: MARC ISRAEL SELLEM/THE JERUSALEM POST)
Israeli citizens and residents of east Jerusalem will be punished if they use their access to Israelis to attack them, Interior Minister Silvan Shalom said on Wednesday.
Shalom said the security cabinet decided to revoke the citizenship or resident status of people who are involved in terrorism and take away their financial benefits.
“This is no less a harsh and deterring punishment than destroying houses,” he said at a Knesset Finance Committee meeting reviewing his ministry’s budget.
Two terrorists already received notice of the penalty: Shuruk Salah Ibrahim committed an act of terrorism on Monday in Jerusalem; and Subhi Ibrahim Muhammad Abu Khalifah, 19, perpetrated a terrorist attack on Tuesday in Jerusalem and has been a legal resident of east Jerusalem since 2001. His mother is a resident of Israel and his father is a Jordanian who received resident status in 2007.
Shalom is also looking into revoking the resident status of Palestinians involved in terrorism who received their status through marriage to Israelis or east Jerusalem residents.
Economic benefits that do not fall under the Interior Ministry’s jurisdiction will also be rescinded from terrorists, including National Insurance Institute payments to the parents if the terrorist is killed, and disability payments if he or she is injured.
“We must vomit the bloodthirsty murderers from among us,” Shalom said. “These terrorists who blatantly violated their allegiance to the State of Israel by trying to murder innocent people are not worthy of living among us.
“A country that seeks life cannot and will not allow these terrorists to continue to be called residents and citizens, and continue enjoying the benefits of that status,” he added.
Shalom has the authority to revoke citizenship and resident status under the Law of Entry to Israel.
The authority was used by past interior ministers, including Ronnie Bar-On, who revoked the resident status of four Palestinians residing in east Jerusalem, three of whom were elected members of the Palestinian parliament and one who became a minister, all through Hamas.
Last week, France stripped five terrorists of their citizenship, bringing the number of terrorists receiving the punishment to 17 this year.