Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu addressed the recent crime wave, saying that he supports tougher punishment in order to create deterrence.
Speaking during the weekly cabinet meeting on Sunday the prime minister said, "Our youth won't get themselves drunk beyond recognition. We must shake the tree. I place huge importance on toughening punishment."
The government ministers were briefed on the crime situation in the country by Police Commissioner Dudi Cohen and Internal Security Minister Yithak Aharonovitch during the cabinet meeting.
Netanyahu said he instructed Aharonovitch to "expedite special legislative processes to toughen punishment," adding that the government must also work towards improving the efficiency of police forces in Israel's cities and communities." The PM praised Israel Police for solving a number of recent murder cases.
Aharonovitch, for his part, said he would examine the possibility on revising legislation on the use and sale of alcohol, adding that a police budget increase is required to contain the crime surge.
Among other things, the internal security minister suggested additional taxation on alcohol and limiting the number of places where it is sold.
There was a consensus among the ministers as for the need to establish urban police forces.
Police Chief Cohen said the fight on crime must be a top priority, or else crime will become a "national threat."