New Laws Aim to Revoke Israeli Arab Terrorists' Citizenship

In wake of Jerusalem terror attack, Knesset approves two bills by overwhelming majority.

The Knesset approved in a preliminary reading on Wednesday two bills that would enable the government to revoke the citizenship of Israeli Arabs involved in terror activities as well as that of their families.

The vote came hours after a Palestinian man went on a deadly rampage in downtown Jerusalem, ramming a bulldozer into a crowded bus and a string of vehicles, killing at least four people and wounding dozens.

The bills were proposed by MKs Yuli Edelstein (Likud) and Nissan Slomiansky (National Union ? National Religious Party), and were approved by an overwhelming majority in the Knesset.

Slomiansky proposed granting the interior minister the authority to revoke the permanent residency benefits of East Jerusalem residents involved in terror and those of their families. According to Slomiansky, "there is a limit to how far democracy does. It is shocking that a person is given a blue ID card and he uses it to carry out terror attacks."

Edelstein's proposal suggests that the citizenship or permanent residency of any person participating in terrorist acts against Israel and its citizens will be revoked. Edelstein said that this amendment must be made "once and for all." The legislative ministerial committee had originally planned not to approve this bill, but in the wake of Wednesday's terror attack, the government chose to refrain from taking a stance.

The police said that the perpetrator of Wednesday's terror attack in Jerusalem was a resident of one of the villages in East Jerusalem. He was in possession of a blue ID card. The attacker also had a criminal record.

MK Esterina Tartman (Yisrael Beiteinu) said that if the terrorist was in fact a resident of East Jerusalem, his home must be demolished and his family members must be deported to Gaza.