The shooting of a 9-year-old girl in a West Bank settlement Saturday night drew swift reactions from Israeli politicians on the right, some of whom called for Jerusalem to reconsider negotiations with the Palestinians.
Deputy Foreign Minister Ze’ev Elkin (Likud) said the suspected terror attack stemmed from incitement rampant in the Palestinian Authority and Ramallah’s refusal to recognize a Jewish state in peace talks with Israel.
“When one of the Palestinian leader, Nabil Shaath, says that talks are at a dead end because Palestinians will never recognize a Jewish state in any borders, it’s no surprise that somebody takes from that a practical conclusion and arranges attacks,” Elkin said, according to Israel National News.
“We need to look at reality with clear eyes and not forget what the real goal is of those who sit opposite us in the negotiating room.”
Deputy Defense Minister Danny Danon (Likud) responded that the Palestinians were being two-faced in entering talks while terror continued. “Anyone that backs terrorists cannot be called a negotiating partner,” he said.
The calls echoed politicians’ responses following a similar attack two weeks ago, in which a suspected Palestinian sniper shot a soldier in Hebron. Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas came under criticism for not condemning the attack, or one two days earlier in which a soldier was lured to a West Bank village and then killed.
Economics Minister Naftali Bennett (Jewish Home) said the shooting of the girl in Psagot, which sits adjacent to Ramallah, was the latest in a series of terror attacks.
The girl, apparently shot by an infiltrator into the settlement, was taken to Jerusalem Shaare Zedek hospital in light to moderate condition.
MK Tzipi Hotovely (Likud) called for negotiations with the Palestinians to be cut off, while a number of others said the government should halt freeing Palestinian prisoners, which Jerusalem had agreed to do in exchange for peace talks.
“The attack tonight is a red light for the Israeli government,” MK Shuli Moalem (Jewish Home) said. “Whoever wants to preserve security doesn’t free prisoners.”