As attention continues to focus on the new military orders: HaMoked responds to Israel's spin campaign to distort and downplay the effects of the orders and the broad new powers it grants the military המוקד להגנת הפרט
14.04.2010
As attention continues to focus on the new military orders: HaMoked responds to Israel's spin campaign to distort and downplay the effects of the orders and the broad new powers it grants the military
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Press Release

14.4.2010

 

CONTRARY TO ISRAEL’S STATEMENTS, INFILTRATION ORDERS ALLOW, AS OF YESTERDAY, THE IMPRISONMENT OR DEPORTATION OF PALESTINIAN WEST BANKERS WITHOUT JUDICIAL REVIEW


Yesterday two military orders came into effect which define, for the first time since the occupation of the oPt in 1967, Palestinian residents of the Occupied Territories as “infiltrators” or “illegal aliens” in their land and in their homes.
 
Contrary to statements made by political and military officials, the orders allow deportation of a person from his home within 72 hours, without judicial review..This is due to the fact that while the orders require the military commander to bring the individual under threat of deportation before the committee for judicial review within eight days of the arrest, he also has the authority to deport the individual within 72 hours. At the same time, the individual under threat of deportation cannot turn to the committee, or seek any other legal recourse on his own initiative within those eight days.
Claims made by Israel that family relations will be taken into account when considering whether or not to deport a person clash with the military’s official and written position – as has been presented to the Supreme Court – that when it comes to decisions on entry, presence or deportation from the West Bank, “family ties in and of themselves do not constitute sufficient humanitarian grounds”.

Over the past year, HaMoked: Center for the Defence of the Individual has petitioned the Supreme Court in a number of cases in which the military issued orders of deportation to Gaza against Palestinians who were present in the West Bank and whose registered address is in the Gaza Strip. In some of the cases, the justices harshly criticized the deportation and clarified to the military that the orders were extremely problematic from a legal standpoint. The military was subsequently forced to revoke the deportation orders. There is no wonder, then, that in the last few months the military managed - or preferred, in light of the criticism directed against it – to deport to the Gaza Strip only five individuals. There is no doubt that the new order was meant, inter alia, to serve as a way to circumvent the Supreme Court in order to facilitate, allow and sanction deportation in similar cases in the future.

The military’s attempts to explain and clarify the manner in which it intends to apply the new orders – and as such to clarify, for instance, that it does not intend to apply them to settlers – attest to the fact that the orders’ vague wording is entirely open to arbitrary interpretation in accordance with changing policies and political considerations.

Moreover, defining a person as an infiltrator renders him criminally liable. Not only might all Palestinians living in the West Bank be removed from it, but now they also find themselves suddenly declared criminals who may be sentenced to lengthy jail terms despite having done nothing wrong and having always acted lawfully.

The military’s statements indicate that Israel does not currently intend to use the orders in a sweeping manner for the purpose of mass deportation of residents of the Territories, however, the orders’ severity and utter unlawfulness stem primarily from the very fact that they allow such actions now or in the future.

In accordance with international law, a person’s right not to be deported from his home and his place of residence is a central and substantive fundamental right. The Fourth Geneva Convention imposes a complete ban on forced removal of civilians from their homes, a prohibition whose violation is considered a grave violation of the Convention. We call on all state parties to the Convention to take immediate action to have the Order regarding Prevention of Infiltration (Amendment No. 2) and the Order regarding Security Provisions (Amendment No. 112) revoked.

To view background material and the orders: http://hamokeden.red-id.com/Document.aspx?dID=Updates1013
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