Knesset to weigh extending jail time for terror killings
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Knesset to weigh extending jail time for terror killings

Bill that would increase minimum sentence from 40 to 60 years has cross-party support; Yisrael Beytenu renews push for death penalty for terrorists

Mother Hava and relatives and friends mourn during the funeral of Kim Levengrond Yehezkel, aged 28, one of the two Israelis killed earlier in a terrorist attack, on October 7, 2018, in Rosh Haayin. (AFP PHOTO / Gil COHEN-MAGEN)
Mother Hava and relatives and friends mourn during the funeral of Kim Levengrond Yehezkel, aged 28, one of the two Israelis killed earlier in a terrorist attack, on October 7, 2018, in Rosh Haayin. (AFP PHOTO / Gil COHEN-MAGEN)

At the beginning of its winter session next week, the Knesset will discuss a significant increase of the jail time given to terrorists convicted of murder.

A bill proposed by Likud MK Amir Ohana to increase from 40 years to 60 the minimum sentence for terrorists convicted of murder has received support from lawmakers on the right and left. The proposed bill has been co-signed by MKs from the Likud and Kulanu parties as well as the opposition Zionist Union.

On Sunday it will be discussed by the Ministerial Committee for Legislation, Haaretz reported Thursday..

In addition, the Yisrael Beytenu party is pushing to renew talks on stalled legislation to enact the death penalty for terrorists.

That bill won initial backing in a January preliminary reading in the Knesset, despite some coalition lawmakers expressing reservations over the legislation. Its progress since then has been repeatedly delayed.

“Throughout this period we have appealed several times to the head of the National Security Council requesting that the bill be brought up for cabinet debate,” MK Robert Ilatov said. “We expect the coalition to advance the law through its first stage and pass it on to the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee.”

In June, Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman, who heads the Yisrael Beytenu party, urged fellow ministers to approve the bill, saying there is no reason for Israel to be more enlightened than the US in the war on terror.

The death penalty bill was a key election promise by Liberman ahead of the March 2015 Knesset elections, and reportedly was part of a deal agreed to when his party joined the current government.

Kim Levengrond Yehezkel, 29 (left), and Ziv Hajbi, 35, who were killed in a terror shooting in the Barkan industrial zone in the West Bank, October 7, 2018 (screenshots: Facebook)

On Sunday Kim Levengrond Yehezkel, 28, and Ziv Hajbi, 35, were killed and Sara Vaturi, 54, was wounded in a terror attack in the northern West Bank’s Barkan Industrial Park.

Ashraf Walid Suleiman Na’alowa, a Palestinian man suspected of carrying out a deadly terror attack on October 7, 2018 in the Barkan Industrial Zone in the northern West Bank. (Courtesy)

One of their Palestinian co-workers, Ashraf Na’alowa, 23, is suspected of carrying out the attack.

Following the attack, Na’alowa fled the scene and has eluded capture, according to the Israeli military.

The hunt for the suspected terrorist entered its fifth day Thursday.

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