About the Petition
The Petitioner is a Palestinian youth who was shot and injured by soldiers when he was 14. As a result of the shooting, the Petitioner's left arm is paralyzed and he suffers from other injuries. The Petitioner filed a tort claim against the State of Israel. The claim was brought before the courts in Israel, as the State obliges Palestinians whom it hurt to file suit in Israeli courts.
In its petition, HaMoked claimed that the heavy cost of hiring private security companies would deny access to justice to poor Palestinian litigants and constitutes, therefore, blatant, humiliating discrimination and an injury to their basic rights. HaMoked also claimed that a task which is obviously the domain of the government, such as security escort, cannot be privatized, and that it was incumbent on the police or military police to provide the escort, at no further charge.
This demand by the State, is yet another measure in Israel's clear mission to prevent Palestinians harmed by soldiers and police officers, outside the context of war, to file suit for their damages. Other measures include, reducing the statute of limitations on Palestinians' claims from seven to two years, repeated requests to oblige Palestinians to deposit large sums of money as guarantees in legal proceedings, and recently, amending the Civil Wrongs (Liability of the State) Law to award the State blanket immunity from compensation to Palestinian victims of the intifada.
The State claims that the new procedure is reasonable and that the police does not have the means to provide the escort. Nevertheless the State did reveal that over the past two years, only 120 requests to enter Israel were submitted by persons who are both litigants in Israel and are prevented from entering it. In a hearing held on 4 April 2005, the Justices did not accept the State's proposal and issued an Order Nisi compelling the State to respond to the Petitioners' claims.
On 20 November 2005, the State submitted its Affidavit of Response in which it insisted that the procedure was reasonable and proportionate. The State also stressed that lower instances should deliberate on the Petitioner's claims.
The HCJ Hearing on 5 December 2005
In a hearing held on 5 December 2005, the Court accepted the State's claims that the Magistrates' Court has the authority to hear the Petitioners' claims in a manner which makes its own intervention and decision on issues of principle unjustified. Additionally, the State's notice according to which Courts which are currently reviewing the matter in similar claims have the authority to examine and rule on the question of funding for the escort and decide on practical alternative solutions which would maintain the right of access to justice.
In view of this, the petition was deleted, while note was taken of the fact that the Petitioners' reserve all claims.
Other Court Documents in the Petition: