According to Israel Hayom, there has been a jump of more than 700% in Israelis applying for a gun permit starting Sunday night, immediately following the bloody terrorist attack in Hadera. 433 online applications were submitted between 9 PM Sunday and 8 AM Monday. According to police, the normal daily average is 60 applications per day.
To obtain a firearm permit in Israel, certain threshold conditions must be met. The basic threshold conditions are permanent residency and a stay in the country for at least three years, command of Hebrew, age, and military service. The applicant must also submit a health statement signed by a physician, including a risk assessment for carrying a weapon. Having met these threshold conditions, the applicant has to meet various other criteria, such as their place of residence, place of work, and professional occupation.
And yet, according to MK Shlomo Karhi (Likud), Hesder yeshiva students who applied for gun permits were rejected, even though military service is an essential component of their learning schedule. A Hesder yeshiva student typically studies for 18 to 24 months, enlists for 17 months, and returns to the yeshiva for a study schedule that’s intertwined with military service until the completion of 48 months of enlistment.
The Interior Ministry is using their convoluted service schedule against the Hesder students, arguing that they are considered to be enlisted soldiers throughout the 48 months of their service, and enlisted soldiers are not qualified to apply for a weapon permit.
MK Karhi has asked the chair of the Knesset Public Security Committee, MK Merav Ben Ari (Yesh Atid) to promote the move that would allow Hesder students who have completed their active service but are still within their 48 months of service, to be permitted to carry a personal weapon, especially in light of the current security situation: “Granting gun permits to these young fighters will strengthen security on our streets,” Karhi said.
Ra’anana-born Ben Ari was a Lieutenant in the IDF and served as the Education Officer of the Golani division.