PM Netanyahu's Remarks at the Start of the Weekly Cabinet Meeting 3.1.16

The security forces – the ISA and the Israel Police – are continuing to search for the Tel Aviv murderer. A major effort in the field is being made by many forces; there are continuous intelligence efforts. This effort is also being made with the assistance of Israeli civilians who are showing awareness and responsibility.


I will ask the Public Security Minister to deliver a short briefing and I would also like to update you on something else. When we formed the government, I asked Minister Erdan, and afterwards the Inspector General of the Israel Police, to make a major effort to change something which has prevailed in the State of Israel for almost 70 years and this is the absence of law enforcement in the Arab sector. The citizens themselves are suffering there; they are suffering from increasing crime, and all citizens of Israel are suffering from the incitement and the violence, which is both criminal and nationalistic, that harms all citizens of Israel.


Therefore, this effort is a genuine effort. We have decided to make this change and promote the enforcement of the law in all areas: In construction laws that are not being enforced at all, in the laws regarding the noise that we hear from mosques, in the incitement from mosques, and – of course – on social media and, sadly, in the education system, and the basic matter of collecting illegal weapons that are found in very great quantities in the Arab sector. This activity has started, it will be carried out, it will be carried out in the coming days and it will gather momentum, because we will make a very great effort so that the State of Israel will be a unified nation of law. This is the right thing. I am not impressed by the criticism on this issue. This is right for all citizens of Israel – Arabs and Jews alike.


Enforcing the law is the life's breath of democracy, of the rule of law. We are not restricting it to one sector and we are not focusing on only one sector. This morning two indictments will be filed against those involved in the Duma affair. We are against murder of any kind. We are against violence of any kind. We are against violations of the law wherever they occur. We are a state of law and we will enforce the law throughout the State of Israel and vis-à-vis all citizens of Israel.


This past weekend a new Egyptian ambassador arrived to Israel, Hazem Khairat. I welcome his arrival; I welcome the re-stationing of an Egyptian ambassador in Israel, which will enable us to further strengthen relations with this important and key Arab country.


Today we mark Hebrew Language Day. Yesterday was the birthday of Eliezer Ben-Yehuda, who revived the Hebrew language. Ben-Yehuda said nearly 140 years ago that Israel's rebirth will be in the Land of Israel and in the Hebrew language, because there is no nation without a common language. Today, we mark it, and we are actually fulfilling the dream of Eliezer Ben-Yehuda. I must say, that when the revival of the Hebrew language began, there were those still in exile, including my father, who learned Hebrew as their mother tongue. I would like to see us return to the level of Hebrew that the generation which revitalized the language was familiar with. That would be very helpful. In addition to the renewal of the language, we should know its origins and its foundations, and this is what is being done today.




Photo: Kobi Tsarfati