Terrorist ran over, stabbed his victims
Terrorist ran over, stabbed his victims Gershon Elinson/Flash90

Israeli officials have reacted strongly to the two terrorist stabbing attacks that occurred Monday - the first in Tel Aviv and the second in Gush Etzion - with MKs calling on Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu to truly fight Arab terrorism.

In an official statement, President Reuven Rivlin urged national unity in the face of ongoing attacks. 

"These are difficult days. They demand of us unity and strength in the face of the perpetrators of terror, who proved today with their blood-soaked hands, that the reality in Jerusalem is as it is in Tel Aviv, and the reality in Tel Aviv is as it is in Gush Ezion.

"I call on all elected officials, all our leaders, from all across the political spectrum, to stand united before the State of Israel. I place my trust in the security forces, that they will not rest until they return normality to our daily lives.  I extend my heartfelt sympathies to the family who have lost that most dear to them on this terrible day, and send my wishes for a speedy and full recovery to all those injured."

Deputy Transport Minister Tzipi Hotovely (Likud) made a similar point, saying that today's attacks illustrated how "terrorism does not differentiate between Jerusalem and Tel Aviv. A wave of Arab terrorism is spreading throughout the country and with it the loss of personal security. He who abandons the sovereignty of the Temple Mount gets terrorism all over Israel in response."

Housing Minister Uri Ariel (Jewish Home) said that Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas, together with the Palestinian "terrorist government" are "inciting the Arab public to murder innocent Jews" and that "security forces are busy containing the rage" instead of decisively stamping out terrorism.

"I demand that the Prime Minister release the handcuffed hands of security forces and allow them to dash to pieces the head of the snake," he forcefully added. 

Yesha Council Chairman, Avi Roeh, made a similar point, joining a chorus of officials blaming PA chief Mahmoud Abbas for incitement. 

"Terrorism comes out of Abbas' incitement - he is trying to turn this whole country into a war front. For the heads of the Palestinian Authority the law in Jerusalem is the same as in Tel Aviv and as in Gush Etzion."

"Israeli concessions, the release of terrorists, wholesale disregard for the incitement and glorification of terrorists, and hesitancy in handling terrorism in Jerusalem - this is the fuel driving terrorists to lift their head again."

Roeh added: ''Now is the time to launch an operation to root out terrorism, with widespread arrests and renewed building in Jerusalem and Judea and Samaria."

MK Moti Yogev (Jewish Home) called on Netanyahu to treat those responsible for terrorism as an enemy rather than as a partner. As he put it: "the Arabs have lifted their heads thanks to the incitement of Abbas and the Palestinian Authority, and are now perpetrating terrorist attacks. War is war."

''Let the Cabinet meet periodically to evaluate the situation and make decisions. Grant the Israeli Defense Forces and Israeli police the tools, the execution policy, the ability to open fire, and especially the backup of soldiers and policemen, so that even in the case of error, we can defeat terrorism and restore security to Israel - in Jerusalem, in Tel Aviv, in Alon Shvut and everywhere in Israel."

MK Danny Danon (Likud) - who has been a vocal critic of Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu - tied the wave of Arab violence to the government's unwillingness to decisively defeat terrorists during the summer's war in Gaza.

"The citizens of Israel continue to pay a high price due to the lack of a decisive victory in the Gaza Strip. We must act with an iron fist and exact a price from the architects of terror who act in unison – Abu Mazen and Hamas, who have set a common goal before themselves – the elimination of the state of Israel."

"It is time to stop talking," he said. "Now is the time to put into operation plans that forbid the entry of Palestinians into Israel, the expulsion of illegal infiltrators to Gaza, an end to the VIP conditions that Abu Mazen and his government enjoy, and an immediate end of the transfer of funds to the Palestinian Authority."

MK Shuli Mualem-Rafaeli (Jewish Home) criticized what she saw as a lack of seriousness in the way authorities are responding to the string of deadly attacks in recent days, and particularly the reliance on defensive measures instead of proactive ones.

"It's time to understand that the murderous attacks in recent days are not episodes of 'Master Chef' but deliberate attacks from terrorists who have a knife in their hands and their feet on the gas," she said.

"The furious wave of terrorism will not be stopped by concrete barriers or iron domes. With terror you need to actively fight, and not with defensive moves."

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