Member of Knesset Jamal Zahalka has refused to condemn the murder Tuesday of a young father-of-five. A terrorist stabbed actor Evyatar “Napo” Borovsky to death as he waited for a ride at the Tapuach Junction.
Zahalka, of the controversial Balad party, declined to condemn the slaying during a heated debate with MK Orit Struk and others over a proposal to allow Jews living in Judea and Samaria (Shomron) to shoot home invaders, as is legal elsewhere in Israel. The proposal was discussed Tuesday in the Knesset’s Constitution, Law and Justice Committee.
“You’re a racist fascist,” Zahalka told Struk. “You want to murder people… Settlers have no right to self-defense.”
When asked to condemn Tuesday’s attack, Zahalka instead addressed Israelis living in Judea and Samaria. “Get out of there. You’re thieves and criminals. You come to steal and to take what belongs to us…. The solution is that you leave,” he said.
MK David Rotem (Likud), a resident of the city of Efrat in Judea, responded simply, “Keep dreaming.”
Returning to the debate over weapons use, the IDF’s legal advisor for Judea and Samaria, Colonel Doron Ben-Barak, explained that many of the weapons used to protect Israeli communities in the region were issued by the military. “The army that issues the weapons has a right to determine the policy regarding opening fire,” he argued.
Regarding the possibility of extending the Dromi Law, which allows Israeli homeowners to shoot to protect their farms or other property, he said, “Not every harm to property justifies opening fire.” However, he said, in practice, a homeowner in Judea or Samaria who used an IDF-issued gun to open fire on an intruder who he believed posed a threat would not face trial.
MK Merav Michaeli of the Labor party objected to extending the Dromi Law. “The situation is already very volatile,” she said. “There is no need to extend the open-fire orders.”