Points of Views
From Jerusalem
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0202 – Points of View from Jerusalem


"The Occupation grants its soldiers immunity against allegations of [Arab] Jerusalemites

[Israeli] Public Security Minister Gilad Erdan is working to introduce an amendment to a law, which would grant immunity to border guards in Jerusalem against any lawsuits filed against them by Palestinians in the city to obtain compensation for their property or person resulting from an assault.

Erdan plans to include the activities of the Border Police as part of a military operation that removes the Occupation soldiers' responsibility to pay monetary compensation to the Palestinians.

Today, the Occupation's laws grant immunity to police officers, including border guards, in the West Bank except for Jerusalem.

The amendment was aimed at blocking civil compensation claims by Palestinians, the number of which has increased in recent years due to the ongoing clashes between them and Occupation forces.

Erdan mentioned that the amendment would grant Border Guard soldiers special immunity in light of the fact that they stand face to face with what he called "terrorist acts" in Jerusalem.

Erdan seeks to pass this amendment in cooperation with the Israeli attorney general and Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked. If the amendment goes into effect, it will impose a prohibition on [Arab] Jerusalemites to submit any compensation claims for actions of the Occupation authorities.

Ha'aretz reported that Occupation police in Jerusalem are dealing with ten compensation claims submitted to Israeli courts by Palestinian residents of Jerusalem who suffered losses and injuries following actions by the Occupation police.

Erdan's proposal comes in parallel to the fact that the Knesset approved, in a preliminary reading, a bill that forbids documenting the army's actions when it carries out its military missions. The bill states that "soldiers must be prevented from being photographed and those who photograph them and publish the pictures will face five years in jail if this causes injury to the combat soldiers and for ten years, if the purpose of the photograph and publication of the pictures is to harm the security of the state."

Arab MK Yussef Jabarin said that the purpose of the bill is to hide the true face of the Occupation and cover its crimes, especially assassination operations and the harassment against the Palestinian people.

The bill was approved, despite the opposition of the attorney general, who described the law as unconstitutional and harming democracy.

Al-Jazeera correspondent Elias Karam said that the bill would undergo substantive amendment at the start of the Knesset debate in three readings, including an easing of the severity and nature of the punishments."

– Al-Jazeera Net

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