Netanyahu Says Will Fast-track Legislation on Minimum Sentences for Stone-throwing

The announcement came in the wake of deadly car crash police believed was caused by stone-throwing, and other violent incidents in the West Bank and East Jerusalem.

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A masked Palestinian youth throws stones towards Israeli security forces during clashes in East Jerusalem April 25, 2015. (illustrative)Credit: AFP

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's Office announced on Monday evening that he would fast-track legislation to set a minimum sentence for stone and firebomb throwing.

The announcement came in the wake of a deadly car crash police believe was caused by stone-throwing, as well as other violent incidents in the West Bank and East Jerusalem. On Monday evening, Border Police chased masked perpetrators who threw stones and firebombs at a road near the West Bank settlement of Ma'aleh Adumim. An 18-year-old Palestinian from Issawiya was lightly wounded in the chase.

The 18-year-old, who had a slingshot and a face-covering, was transferred to Hadassah University Hospital, Mt. Scopus, in Jerusalem for treatment. Palestinian sources say Israeli security forces stopped a Red Crescent ambulance treating the man, and forced them to transfer him to Hadassah so they could arrest him.

On Monday evening, the name of the victim of the deadly car crash in Jerusalem on Sunday was cleared for publication. The deceased was Alexander Levlovitch. The 64-year-old lost control of his vehicle in East Jerusalem when the car was hit by stones. Two passengers were lightly wounded. His relatives said that they were returning home from a family dinner celebrating Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year.

Police believe Levlovitch crashed because stones were thrown at his vehicle, and are searching for suspects. The Jerusalem District Court issued a gag order on details of the investigation. Palestinian sources insist this was a road accident, not a terror attack.

In wake of his death, Netanyahu also said he would hold an emergency meeting Tuesday evening to discuss "the war on stone throwing and fire bombs in Jerusalem and its vicinity."

In other violent incidents during the Jewish New Year holiday, another Jewish youth was lightly wounded by a stone thrown in Jerusalem, and a  16-year-old was arrested on suspicion of throwing stones at Border Police officers at the Mount of Olives.