Israel Mulls Demolishing Homes of Terrorists Causing Serious Injury, Not Only Death

Current law limits the demolitions, which are carried out as a deterrence to future terrorists attacks, to cases of murder

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Demolition of the home of assailant who killed three members of the Solomon family
Demolition of the home of Omar al-Abed in the W. Bank village of Kobar. Abed killed three members of the Solomon family in the settlement of Halamish on July 21, 2017.Credit: IDF Spokesman

Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman has instructed on Sunday that consideration be given to expanding the policy of demolishing the homes of terrorists whose attacks have resulted in death to also include acts that resulted in serious injury. Current law in only permits the demolition of the homes of terrorists who have killed Israelis.

The policy has been a matter of some controversy, but is carried out on the argument that it serves as a deterrent against future terrorist attacks as it affects other family members living in the household.

"There is no difference between a terrorist attack resulting in murder and an attack that resulted in serious injury," the defense chief said. "In both instances, the homes of the terrorists should be demolished." The defense minister, who is the leader of the Yisrael Beiteinu party, recently approached the Israeli army and the legal advisers to the defense agencies asking that the policy be expanded.

"The fight against terrorism requires that we be determined and act in a variety of ways and forcefully against those trying to harm us – the perpetrators and those who dispatch them," Lieberman said. "The demolition of the homes of terrorists who have committed acts of murder is a proven effective tool in the fight against terrorism and in deterring those planning terrorist attacks," he said.