Israel’s governing coalition has agreed to submit a draft bill to parliament ordering capital punishment for Palestinians involved in attacks on Tel Aviv.
Minister of military affairs Avigdor Lieberman’s Yisrael Beitenu party said in a statement that the leaders of the six political parties that form the governing coalition endorsed the draft bill on Sunday.
Although the statement’s wording was not explicit, the bill is aimed at Palestinian fighters in line with Lieberman’s previous bids.
“The legislation should be very simple and very clear – a terrorist who comes to kill innocent civilians will be sentenced to death,” the Hebrew-language announcement said.
According to the statement, Lieberman claimed that if passed into law the bill would be a powerful deterrent to Palestinians.
“We must not allow terrorists to know that after a murder they have committed, they will sit in prison, enjoy the conditions and may be released in the future,” Lieberman wrote.
In the most recent such deal, over 1,000 Palestinian prisoners were released by Israel in 2011 in exchange for Gilad Shalit, an Israeli soldier kept in Gaza for more than five years.
Over the past few years, the territories have been witnessing what is widely referred to as the Third Intifada or Palestinian uprising against the Israeli occupation.
The tensions broke out in August 2015 when Tel Aviv introduced restrictions on the entry of Palestinian worshipers into the al-Aqsa Mosque compound in East Jerusalem al-Quds.
Israeli forces have been confronting the Palestinian protesters with unremitting aggression, killing more than 300 of them since October that year, when the clashes intensified.
Israel’s aggression and expansion activities in the occupied territories of the West Bank and East al-Quds are seen by Palestinians as a means of gradual annexation of their lands.
Member of Israel’s parliament (Knesset) Nachman Shai censured the draft bill, saying that “the death penalty will bring with it international pressure that Israel will not be able to withstand at this time.”
He noted that it aims to maintain “the survival of the coalition.”
“The death penalty does not deter, but rather creates heroes of terror,” he further said.
The statement did not set a date for the bill to be put before parliament.