Several hundred members of bereaved families signed a petition supporting Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman (Yisrael Beiteinu), who prevented the entry of Gaza Arabs wishing to participate in a joint memorial ceremony with Israelis. The signatories to the petition also calls on the High Court of Justice to reject a petition filed against Liberman by the event organizers.
Last week, the defense minister refused the entry of 110 family members of terrorists into Israeli territory after they had been invited to the “Israeli-Palestinian memorial ceremony” expected to take place on the eve of the upcoming Memorial Day, Tuesday night. In response, the organizers petitioned the High Court of Justice to approve the entry of their guests to Israel.
Liberman attacked the joint memorial service, stating, “I will not give my hand to desecrate Memorial Day. This is not a memorial ceremony, but a demonstration of bad taste and insensitivity that harms the bereaved families who are so dear to us.”
This is the joint ceremony’s 13th consecutive year. It is organized by Combatants for Peace and the Israeli-Palestinian Bereaved Families Forum.
The bereaved families’ petition was posted online in preparation for the High Court of Justice hearing, and it calls on the court to act ethically and reject the joint event’s petition.
“We hereby express our strong protest against the insult to the sacred State-run memorial day for the fallen soldiers of Israel and the victims of hostilities, by a provocative and offensive move to bring into the territory of the state terrorist families – of murderers and their accomplices – to a ‘joint ceremony’ that will, in fact, create a false equation of fallen IDF soldiers and victims of the hostilities and those lowly murderers who annihilate men, women and children,” the petition says.
Rabbi Roni Kleinold, director of Ulpenat Zivia, one of the initiators of the petition, who lost his brother Moshe Kleinwald, and his brother-in-law Moshe Tal, said in a statement: “The terrible cynicism of the organizers of the ceremony, which gives a place of honor to abject murderers, precisely on this sacred evening – Memorial Day, is a painful blow to the hearts of many members of the bereaved families and to the dignity of the fallen.”
“I expect the court to reject this hallucinatory petition out of hand, which attempts to make political hay out of the blood of the many who fell in Israel’s wars.”