Israeli Gov't Under Pressure to Lock Down Palestinian Neighborhoods

Opposition leader calls for temporarily closure of flashpoint Temple Mount; Education Minister Bennett calls for curfew in West Bank.

Jonathan Lis
Jonathan Lis
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Scene of an attack in Malchi Yisrael St. in Jerusalem, October 13, 2015.
Scene of an attack in Malchi Yisrael St. in Jerusalem, October 13, 2015.Credit: Lior Mizrahi
Jonathan Lis
Jonathan Lis

Opposition leader Isaac Herzog has urged the government to temporarily close the flashpoint Temple Mount, following Tuesday's deadly terror attacks in Jerusalem. Herzog also called on the government to impose a lockdown on Jerusalem's Arab neighborhoods and fight what he called "online incitement" by Islamists. He made the comments on Facebook.

Herzog's statements come amid calls from politicians from across the political specturm for the government to crackdown on Arab communities inside Israel.

At an emergency security cabinet meeting convened by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu for later this afternoon, Education Minister Naftali Bennett will demand the government put Palestinian communities in the West Bank and East Jerusalem on lockdown in response to Tuesday's string of deadly terror attacks. Bennett will also urge the government to move to destroy the homes of any terrorist – not just those who kill Israelis – and move to deport those implicated in attacks that wound Israelis.

Click here for a live update of Tuesday's terror attacks

Agriculture Minister Uri Ariel joined the calls to impose restrictions on residents of East Jerusalem, as well as a closure on the West Bank.

"The security forces must take resolute action in the East Jerusalem neighborhoods,” said Ariel. “The residents of East Jerusalem must understand that they cannot lead a normal life while terrorism continues on the streets of Israel."

Public Security Minister Erdan is mulling immediate steps, including imposing a closure on East Jerusalem neighborhoods and easing gun-control regulations, and acting Israel Police chief Benzi Sau said at a press conference that during this afternoon’s security cabinet meeting the police will present a comprehensive plan to quell the recent bout of terror attacks.

Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat says he has asked the defense establishment to impose a closure on the city's Arab neighborhoods.

"We shouldn't allow them to enter,” said Barkay at the scene of this morning’s deadly bus attack. “The lives of the residents of Jerusalem are more important than anything else."

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