Israeli security and intelligence services have arrested 71 Arabs from eastern Jerusalem this year, almost double the total number arrested last year.
Interior Minister Meir Sheetrit (Kadima) revealed Wednesday morning that "dozens of terrorists" have entered Israel under the family re-reunification laws, which were instituted with the encouragement of the High Court. The laws allow Arabs from Judea, Samaria and Gaza to hold Israeli identity cards after they join family members who are Israeli residents.
Dozens of terrorists" have entered Israel under the family re-reunification laws.
Three Jerusalem Arab terrorists, apparently acting on their own without involvement in an organized terror group, have carried out three attacks this year. All of them worked in the capital.
The first attack was last March, when an Arab driver went on a shooting spree and murdered eight young people at the Merkaz HaRav yeshiva. The other two attacks involved bulldozer and tractor drivers.
Cabinet Ministers Avi Dichter and Sheetrit, among others, have cited the difficulty involved in stopping lone terrorists when they act on their own. Jerusalem police chief Ilan Franco said after Tuesday's tractor terrorist attack that he will meet with senior officers to discuss changing policies in order to cope with the new phenomenon.
Public Security Minister Dichter has called for clear policies concerning demolishing homes of terrorists, which he said is very effective in discouraging others from trying to kill Jews. Legal and bureaucratic obstacles have prevented the demolition of the homes of the terrorists who carried out the first two attacks in the capital this year.
However, an order from the Home Front Command could allow for the immediate demolition of the houses, pending court appeals by families of the terrorists. Relatives of Tuesday's attacker claimed he was involved in a traffic accident and that he merely lost control of the tractor.
The terrorist was identified as a relative of a Hamas legislator who has been in jail on suspicion of being involved in terrorist activities.