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Bill to increase penalties for illegal weapons passes first reading

Justice Minister Gideon Sa'ar leads a faction meeting at the Knesset on February 7, 2022. (Olivier Fitoussi/Flash90)
Justice Minister Gideon Sa'ar leads a faction meeting at the Knesset on February 7, 2022. (Olivier Fitoussi/Flash90)

A bill to increase penalties for illegal weapons possession and purchase has passed its first reading.

Promoted by Justice Minister Gideon Sa’ar, the bill is intended to help fight crime in Arab society, in which improvised weapons targeted by the measure are prevalent.

The bill would extend jail time from three to five years in offenses involving a weapon containing substantial parts from a conventional weapon.

It would also raise the punishment for an offense involving purchasing a weapon from seven to 10 years.

“One of the characteristics and causes of the crime phenomenon in Arab society is the availability of weapons of various kinds on a large scale,” says Sa’ar.

“The bill is intended to increase deterrence,” the justice minister adds.

In preparation for its second and third readings, the bill will be moved to the Knesset’s constitutional committee.

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