Al Jazeera Net correspondents
Occupied Jerusalem- The National Security Affairs Committee discusses BThe KnessetToday, Monday, headed by Zvika Vogel of the “Jewish Greatness” party, the draft law on the execution of Palestinian prisoners, which was re-introduced by the Israeli government after the “battle”Al-Aqsa flood“, in order to approve it on the first reading, and expedite its approval on the second and third readings so that it becomes effective immediately.
The draft law stipulates that “a person who intentionally or through indifference causes the death of an Israeli citizen, and when the act occurs out of racism or hostility toward the Jewish public, and with the aim of harming the State of Israel, its security, and the advancement of the Jewish people, shall be sentenced to death,” noting that it is not present in the current version. The law has no details on how to implement it The death penalty.
Israeli motives for the law
The discussion of the death penalty law for Palestinian prisoners, presented by Jewish Greatness Knesset member Limor Son Har-Melech, comes at a time when the Islamic Resistance Movement (agitation) 240 prisoners in Gaza stripAfter the attack carried out by the Palestinian resistance during the “Al-Aqsa Flood” battle last October 7, on the “settlements”Gaza coverAnd Israeli towns in the south.
The law returned to the forefront amid the war on Gaza, and after the failure of the Israeli ground military operations in the Strip to reach a clue regarding the whereabouts of the Israeli prisoners held by the resistance, amid a political consensus that it is inappropriate to try those involved in the events of last October 7, within criminal legal procedures. Regular, consensus on taking a new mechanism, fast and feasible.
In light of the failure in the “Al-Aqsa Flood”, and the secrecy of military oversight over the course and results of the ground battles in the Gaza Strip, the law enjoys political consensus, after it was controversial in the Israeli political scene, following its approval in preliminary reading last March, within the coalition agreement between the… “Jewish greatness” headed by the Minister of National Security Itamar Ben Gvir And a party Likud Which is led by the Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
Challenges to the death penalty law
Regarding the right-wing parties’ push again to ratify the law, lawyer Fouad Soltani pointed out that the death penalty is stipulated in Israeli law, when a person is convicted of Nazism or whoever helps them, or in the case of cooperation with the enemy during wartime, stressing that the death penalty in Israel has only been carried out once. One in 1962, when German officer Adolf Eichmann was sentenced to death by hanging.
Fouad Sultani, an activist in prisoner movement issues inside Palestine, explained to Al Jazeera Net that the Israeli judiciary faces challenges with everything related to the trial of Palestinian prisoners who are suspected of involvement and participation in the “Al-Aqsa Flood,” in light of the discussion of the idea of establishing a court of their own, and bringing back Formation of the Military Court inside Israel, which existed until 2000.
He pointed out that “Israel has avoided using the death penalty law against Palestinian prisoners, due to the presence of many dilemmas and thorny procedures, such as requiring the presence of a body of jurists instead of soldiers, as is the case with the military trial that existed in the Palestinian territories occupied in 1967,” explaining that the estimates “Shin BetShe was stressing to the political and military levels that the death penalty for prisoners would not deter the escalation of Palestinian resistance.
Cause of acceleration
Palestinian human rights activist Fouad Soltani believes that Israel is exploiting the war on Gaza, the state of emergency, and the Israeli consensus against the Palestinians, in order to legislate a law that speeds up trial procedures and imposes the death penalty on Palestinian prisoners, without even the right to proper representation or the presentation of defense evidence, and depriving the possibility of appealing such punishments.
The promotion of this law comes amid pressure from far-right parties, in an attempt to absorb popular anger in Israel, in light of the expanding circle of protests demanding the release of detained prisoners, and reaching a comprehensive exchange deal that leads to the release of all of them. This is an attempt by the political level to brandish the death penalty internally. And also externally against Hamas to reach an exchange deal.
Fouad warned that the Israeli institution is continuing discussions on establishing a special court to try prisoners from the events of last October 7, as the death penalty law comes in this context, to which many legislation, amendments and procedures will be added, which may lead to the establishment of a military court in Israel. Its mission is to hear the indictment and pronounce the death sentence against the prisoner within hours.
Consensus and confusion
From the Israeli point of view, Yedioth Ahronoth website correspondent for parliamentary affairs, Sifan Hailaei, reported that Ben Gvir, following the events of last October 7, exerted pressure on Netanyahu to push through the law and approve it quickly, noting that the law had It enjoys consensus after the war on Gaza.
Sivan Hailaei pointed out that Israel is holding hundreds of Palestinian prisoners who were captured alive after the “Al-Aqsa Flood” battle, and the Israeli authorities have not initiated any judicial procedures against them so far, apart from subjecting them to investigation by the General Security Service “Shin Bet” on suspicion of involvement and participation in the events. The seventh of last October.
The parliamentary affairs correspondent explained that similar draft laws that were proposed in the past faced many difficulties and legal problems, and therefore it is likely that if the law is approved in the second and third readings, it will be after making many changes to the original text.
The draft law is being pushed at a time when discussions continue in the Israeli judicial system as to whether it is correct to impose the death penalty on the participants in the surprise attack on the 7th of last October, as these are unprecedented events that place the Israeli legal system before difficult dilemmas, according to the judicial affairs correspondent, In the newspaper “Israel Hayom”, Avi Cohen.
Cohen pointed out that the Israeli establishment fears that imposing the death penalty on Palestinian prisoners from Gaza would endanger the lives of Israeli detainees and raise international criticism, and that the death penalty would hinder the process of possible exchange deals and the liberation of all hostages held by Hamas, while it is not unlikely that legislation of the law would be Just a pressure card to break up the exchange deal negotiations.