May 2, 2017
Democracies around the world are searching for ways to protect their citizens from the threat of terrorism. As Israel’s public security minister, I hardly go a week without a foreign official turning to me to learn from our experience. For better or worse, the thousands of attacks carried out by Palestinian terrorists against Israel have made my country a world expert in combating this threat.
As a result of its counterterrorism operations, Israel now holds 6,177 terrorismrelated prisoners. Many of these prisoners were i nvolved in the wave of violence initiated in September 2000 under Yasser Arafat, the Palestinian leader at the time, following his rejection of an American-Israeli peace offer. The terrorist campaign that began then has so far led to the murder of some 1,300 Israelis — mothers and fathers, sons and daughters, children of every faith and background.
Of the 6,177 security prisoners, about 1,200 have recently begun a hunger strike.