MK Yaakov Tesler: 'Arab violence did not sprout in a vacuum'

'Jews are being beaten in the streets simply because they are Jews,' MK Yaakov Tesler says.

Ben Shaul ,

Yaakov Tesler
Yaakov Tesler
Noam Revkin Fenton/Flash90

MK Yaakov Tesler (United Torah Judaism) slammed the judicial system's lackadaisical attitude towards Arab attackers, which encourages violence towards Jews.

Speaking in the Knesset, Tesler said, "These pictures, if they would be from any other place in the world, would have horrified every person and everyone would be standing up and condemning the anti-Semitism and demanding that a harsh stance be taken in order to eradicate this trend."

"The fact that this happening here, in the Land of Israel, in Jerusalem, does not take away from the severity of the actions. The opposite is true: It's seven times more serious, and the reaction as well must be several times more serious."

According to Tesler, such trends began with "small incidents - throwing a haredi youth's hat here, breaking glasses there. It moved to a slap to a yeshiva student traveling innocently on the light rail train. It continued with severe violence against passersby on their way to the Western Wall. And yesterday it already deteriorated to very violently beating a rabbi in the city of Jaffa."

"We have reached a situation in which Jews are being beaten in the streets simply because they are Jews and look haredi or religious. And afterwards they brag about it to their friends fearlessly, which encourages the continuation of this wild behavior, until haredi Jews are afraid to walk the streets of Jerusalem.

"This violence did not sprout in a vacuum. For months, there has been incitement and instigation against the haredi public. From the moment we were made acceptable targets, there are those who decided to take the hate one step further and act with violence and brutality against haredim, and the lack of proper deterrence and severe punishment invites the next actions, increases their frequency, and increases their severity.

"We cannot ignore the rise in tempo and the severity of these horrific events. We are obligated to do everything in order to put an end to these violent actions, and severely punish the criminals. Those inciting must distance themselves from the harmful and inciting words. The law enforcement system - the police and courts - must set the highest and strictest standard of punishment, in order to bring deterrence back to the streets, prevent an increase in the severity of these [attacks], and [prevent] deterioration to even more violent incidents."



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