Naftali Bennett
Naftali Bennett Amos Ben Gershom/GPO

Prime Minister Naftali Bennett called for the formation of civilian national guard in response to the recent wave of terrorist attacks at the start of the weekly Cabinet meeting Sunday.

"At the start of my remarks, I would like to mention those who were murdered in the barbaric, shocking, terrorist attack in Elad: Oran Ben-Yiftach, Yonatan Havakuk and Boaz Gol, may their memories be blessed, and to convey our deepest condolences to their families," Bennett said.

"We said that we would apprehend the terrorists and we have done so. This morning, our forces – the Israel Police and the ISA (Shabak), together with soldiers from the Maglan, Egoz and Mirol [IDF] units – captured the murderers. The miserable terrorists, brainwashed with incitement who used axes to commit unimaginably brutal murders, were apprehended near a local quarry. Again, I commend the ISA and its Director, the Israel Police and its Inspector General, and all of the soldiers.

"Capturing the murderers is not enough. We are at the start of a new stage in the war on terrorism. Those who incite cannot rest easy. Those who throw matches cannot run away," he declared.

."The supreme mission of the Government of Israel is to restore personal security to the citizens of Israel.

"We are advancing two very significant things. First – the establishment of a national guard. I have instructed the National Security Council, in coordination with the Public Security Ministry, to present the government with an orderly and budgeted plan to establish a civilian national guard by the end of the month," he said.

"The urgent need to strengthen the personal security of the citizens of Israel was born a year ago during the events of Operation Guardians of the Walls, mainly in the mixed cities, and it is more urgent than ever in the current wave of terrorism. Time and time again, we see the difference between incidents in which there was a responsible armed civilian in the area and those in which there was not. The need is great, especially in the haredi cities, in which fewer people carry weapons. We are taking action.

"The plan will be based on Border Police units, along with the mobilization of trained units of volunteers and reservists, who together will be defined as a national guard. They will be activated in emergencies and disturbances, and in routine times as well, as necessary.

Explaining the second plan the government is advancing, the prime minister said: "The Israel Police is also embarking on an operation to deal with those present in Israel illegally, which has become a national blight. An entire industry has developed around the smuggling, transportation and employment of people present in Israel illegally, as we have seen, unfortunately, in the latest terrorist attack in which the person who drove the terrorists was brutally murdered."

"Over the weekend, I instructed that an effort be coordinated – operational, legal and regarding infrastructure – against those who transport, provide lodging for and employ people present in Israel illegally. We will use all of the tools at our disposal – including the seizure of vehicles, fines – whatever is needed. All government ministries, but especially the Public Security Ministry and the Justice Ministry, are already working on it," he said.

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