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Israel: 'Knife Terror' Won't Destroy Us


Israeli police officers stand near the body of an alleged Palestinian assailant at the scene of a stabbing in Pisgat Zeev, an Israeli settlement on the northern edge of Jerusalem, Oct. 12, 2015.

On another bloody day of Palestinian stabbings of Israelis, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanhahu said Israel would overcome "knife terror" and exist forever.

"After 100 years of terrorism and 100 years of attempts to destroy the Zionist enterprise, our enemies still have not learned," Netanyahu said to open the new parliament Monday. "What always wins is the recognition that this is our home and our homeland. Our will to live trumps our enemies' desire for death."

Netanyahu again blamed Hamas, the Palestinian National Authority and a group called the Islamic Movement for inciting violence and spreading what he called "lies" that Israel is planning to take over an east Jerusalem holy site revered by both Muslims and Jews.

Rumors surrounding the status of what Muslims call the al-Aqsa Mosque and Jews call the Temple Mount has been at the center of the trouble.

Netanyahu also appealed to Israel's Arab citizens to turn their backs on violence and choose coexistence.

But the prime minister reserved his harshest comments for an Israeli Arab member of parliament, Haneen Zoabi, who called for a full Palestinian uprising. Netanyahu said Zoabi must face a criminal investigation for advocating mass terrorism against Israelis. He said she was unworthy of being a member of the Knesset.

Meanwhile, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas blamed the wave of violence on "acts of aggression" by Israeli settlers.

Riyad Mansour, the Palestinian ambassador to the United Nations, appealed to the Security Council on Monday to take "real action" to bring calm and demand that Israel immediately stop "aggressions" against Palestinian civilians.

At least five Israelis have been killed and 20 wounded in a series of stabbings and other attacks by Palestinians over the last two weeks. Twenty-five Palestinians have been killed, mostly by Israeli police responding to the attacks and by soldiers firing at Palestinian protesters throwing rocks and firebombs.

Monday's violence included an 18-year-old Palestinian shot dead when he attacked an Israeli policeman with a knife in Jerusalem's Old City. An Israeli policeman also shot and wounded a woman who stabbed him near police headquarters in Jerusalem.

A Palestinian teen was killed and another wounded after stabbing two Jews outside a settlement just north of Jerusalem, and an Israeli soldier shot and killed a Palestinian on a bus who had stabbed him and tried to steal his gun.

Palestinians are already frustrated by continued Jewish settlements in lands they want for a future state. Many regard Abbas as weak and are ignoring his appeals for calm.

Israel says the settlements are an essential part of its security. It accuses Palestinians of being unwilling to negotiate peace and refusing to recognize Israel's right to exist.

International peace efforts, led by the United States, are in tatters.