web analytics
December 3, 2016 / 3 Kislev, 5777

Posts Tagged ‘Justice Ministry’

Hekdesh Benvenisti Suing to Evict 9 Arab Squatter Families from Eastern Jerusalem

Wednesday, November 16th, 2016

The Hekdesh Benvenisti submitted this week eviction suits against nine Arab families in the Kfar HaShiloah (Silwan) neighborhood in eastern Jerusalem. To date, the association has sued 72 Arab families it wants evicted, based on the fact that the entire neighborhood belongs to Yemenite residents who settled there in the early 1920s.

Kfar HaShiloah is located on the eastern slope of the Kidron Valley, above the outlet of the Gihon Spring opposite the City of David.

The Hekdesh Benvenisti is an association established in 1899 for the purpose of building the Yemenite neighborhood. According to Daniel Luria, the executive director of Ateret Cohanim-Israel, the Ateret Cohanim NGO assists the Hekdesh facilitate acquisitions in the area, which has been conducting a legal campaign against the Arab squatters who took over the Jewish-owned homes following the 1949 armistice, when the Jordanian Legion governed eastern Jerusalem. The bulk of these Arab families took over the properties in the 1950s and 60s, and today there are some 80 Arab families there.

The Hekdesh went to court after the squatters refused the offer of money to vacate the Jewish properties.

Currently there are more than 50 Jewish families living in the area, some in homes purchased from Arabs, some in Beit Yonatan, an apartment building in the neighborhood, owned by Ateret Cohanim. Last year an Arab family was evicted from what used to be the century-old Yemenite synagogue, and the building has undergone renovations, complete with a glow-at-night star of David on the rooftop. Two additional apartment buildings have been redeemed over the past year, and are also being renovated to accept future Jewish families.

The Jewish residents of the area are often attacked by the Arabs, in many cases requiring intervention by police and Jewish security personnel. The process of removing the Arab squatters promises to be lengthy, but the association expects big rewards in terms of establishing a major, thriving Jewish neighborhood in eastern Jerusalem.

In 2014, White House spokesman Josh Earnest described the new, legal occupants of Kfar HaShiloah as “individuals who are associated with an organization whose agenda, by definition, stokes tensions between Israelis and Palestinians.” Prime minister Netanyahu was “baffled” by the criticism, deeming it “un-American.”

Attorney Avraham Moshe Segal, noted that “various courts, led by the Supreme Court, have determined that the Hekdesh is the exclusive owner of these lands, and we expect that the courts’ rulings be honored precisely.”

JNi.Media

Government to Reveal Lost Yemenite Children 2001 Committee Findings

Saturday, November 12th, 2016

The Netanyahu cabinet on Sunday is expected to approve the revelation of the findings of a 2001 state committee investigation of the disappearance of the children of Yemenite immigrants who arrived in Israel between 1948 and 1954. The proposal to expose the findings was initiated by Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked (Habayit Hayehudi), and MK Nurit Koren (Likud), who petitioned Prime Minister Netanyahu to appoint a minister-level official to examine the issue.

In May, Netanyahu appointed Minister Tzachi Hanegbi (Likud), whose mother, former MK Geula Cohen (Likud and Tehiya), is herself Yemenite. Now, as Hanegbi has concluded his examination, with the help of the state archivist and the Government Freedom of Information Unit of the Justice Ministry, the publication of the committee’s report will be voted on by the cabinet, and followed by a vote of the Knesset Constitution Committee.

According to the proposal, the classified protocols of the 2001 Cohen-Kedmi Committee, which began its investigations in 1995. This followed bloody clashes in Passover of 1994, between the followers of Yemenite Rabbi Uzi Meshulam and police. The Meshulam followers were barricaded in the rabbi’s Yahud home  for 52 days, until police raided the place, aided by snipers and helicopters. One man was killed in the clashes.

The government-appointed committee heard more than 850 testimonies in those seven years, 27 of which remain classified. The committee’s findings were issued in 2001 in a 1,828-page report. Regarding 979 missing babies, the committee concluded that they had concrete evidence that they had died, just as hospital staffs were telling their newcomer parents. But the committee said it had not been able to find evidence on 69 missing babies, and raised the possibility that they had been given to adopting parents by social workers, without consent or even knowledge of their biological parents.

At the time, the government placed a gag order on the content of the committee’s protocols until the year 2071, with the rationale of wishing to avoid additional pain to the parties involved. The proposal the cabinet is expected to approve on Sunday conditions the revelation of specific cases of illegal adoptions on the consent of the adopted person in question. Considering the fact that they are now in their sixties and even seventies, every such revelation will likely touch the lives of dozens of individuals.

Justice Minster Shaked said in a statement that “there is a major public interest in revealing this affair, and to exposing as many of the details as possible. The era of hiding information is over in this country.”

JNi.Media

Attorney General Approves Interrogation of Arab MKs Zoabi, Zahalka on Corruption Charges

Thursday, September 29th, 2016

AG Avihai Mandelblit on Thursday approved police interrogation of two MKs from the Balad faction of the Joint Arab List, Jamal Zahalka and Haneen Zoabi, as part of an investigation of financial irregularities and violations of the campaign finance law, Ha’aretz reported. Police are expected to invite both MKs to visit the Lahav 433 special investigations unit, according to confirmations by party lawyers and the Justice Ministry.

Police are following leads according to which Balad seniors have been systematically transferring millions of dollars into the party coffers illegally, committing a string of fraud violations in the process. Party sources have suggested police have recruited a state witness, a former party member who was aware of the financial irregularities and recently had confrontations with some of the suspects.

On Wednesday, the magistrate court in Haifa released six who had been detained as part of the investigation, including former Balad party Secretary General Awad Abdel-Fattah — despite police request that he be remanded to jail. According to Ha’aretz, Abdel-Fattah gave police his statement at the start of his interrogation and since then has been maintaining his right to silence. The court did extend the detention of party administrator Murad Haddad. Altogether police have detained 37 suspects as part of the investigation, but currently only Haddad remains behind bars.

Balad issued a statement saying the police investigation is part of a political witch hunt and an intimidation campaign against party officials.

Police suspect that millions of dollars which had been reported as donations from abroad were, in fact, laundered funds of Israeli Arab citizens, and that the suspects collaborated to conceal the sources of those funds, committing a long list of criminal violations.

JNi.Media

Former Chief Pathologist: Hebron Terrorist Was Already Dead When Azaria Shot Him

Thursday, September 1st, 2016

Prof. Yehuda Hiss, who was fired from his job as head of the national Forensic Institute by then Deputy Health Minister Yakov Litzman (UTJ), submitted his opinion for the defense Wednesday in the military trial of shooting medic Sgt. Elor Azaria, suggesting “the bullet that hit the terrorist’s head was most likely postmortem.”

Azaria was indicted by the IDF Prosecution for manslaughter for shooting a stabbing terrorist who had already been neutralized and was lying on the ground.

Prof. Hiss’ opinion was written based on the autopsy performed by medical examiner Dr. Hadas Gips, who testified before the same military court in June that the terrorist’s initial wounds, before Azaria shot him in the head, “were not immediately life threatening especially with medical care.” She told the court that “if the terrorist had been given medical treatment, he could have possibly been saved.”

But Israel’s Channel 1 TV News reported Wednesday night that Prof. Hiss’ opinion is that “based on the results of the autopsy and considering the conclusions from the opinion of Prof. Dov Shimon, it is reasonable to assume that the death of the deceased was caused by an acute respiratory failure, combined with an air embolism to the heart and brain, following the damage to the right lung by two bullets. The damage from the bullet that hit the head was, most likely, posthumous.”

Dr. Gips told the court that had the terrorist received treatment even as late as half an hour after the event, he could be saved. She said that what appeared like an air embolism — was not.

The contradiction between the two expert opinions could result in changing the indictment, but not necessarily in an acquittal. The defense may also have to modify its version of events, since to date their claim has been that Azaria saw the terrorist moving before shooting him — although this discrepancy could be explained away with an argument of reflex motion, either by the man on the ground, or by the shooter.

Prof. Hiss is not a well liked figure in Israel, and was fired from his prestigious job at the helm of the Abu Kabir Forensic Institute for mishandling thousands of body parts, some times for pay. According to Ha’aretz, Hiss continued to work for the Justice Ministry and collect his paycheck, which, back in 2015, ranked among the highest for civil servants in Israel.

JNi.Media

Liberman Plans to Bypass Chairman Abbas, Forge Direct Relationships with PA Arabs

Thursday, August 18th, 2016

Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman told military correspondents in his Kirya office in Tel Aviv on Wednesday that he intends to seek out Arab leaders living in the Palestinian Authority and bypass the PLO-run authority government. He wants a personal dialogue with academics, business people and intellectuals. In fact, according to Liberman, his staff has already put together a list of these people whom he now intends to pursue.

There’s also going to be a new website in Arabic, reporting the news of the day from the Defense Ministry’s perspective. It will cost about $2.5 million.

“I want to connect with them directly, not through the [PA headquarters in Ramallah] Muqata,” Liberman reiterated, saying he expects the new website to hit the Internet by the end of January. He admits it’s an ambitious and challenging project, but he’s going for it nonetheless, budgets, regulatory standards and all.

According to Liberman, PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas has been an obstacle to a working solution for the area. Indeed, he asked, “if there are intellectuals, academics, those who stand out on the municipal level — why should they talk to us through Abbas?” Also, if “[Abbas] is talking directly to the Israeli society, why can’t we speak directly to the Palestinian society?”

When asked why, then, if he is seeking out PA Arabs for a dialogue, did he bar the entry into Israel of Muhammad al-Madani, chairman of the Committee for Interaction with Israeli Society, Liberman said al-Madani, a senior PLO official, was not coming to have a dialogue and seek co-existence, but the opposite.

Liberman also told the military correspondents about a rift between himself and the Attorney General Avihay Mandelblitt, who objects to the Defense Minister’s policy of holding on to the bodies of terrorists killed while carrying out attacks against Israelis and has gone so far as to state that he would refuse to defend the new policy before the Supreme Court. Liberman said that’s fine, if need be he would defend the policy before the court. Liberman said he asked Prime Minister Netanyahu to discuss the issue in the cabinet, because “it looks a little grotesque that the two ministries (Internal Security and Defense) maintain contradictory policies on this matter.”

The Justice Ministry also objects to Liberman’s new policy on terrorist bodies, because it contradicts fundamental Supreme Court rulings. They do support conditioning the release on the families’ committing to small funerals that won’t erupt into riots.

JNi.Media

Finance and Justice Ministries to Crack Down on Gambling

Wednesday, August 3rd, 2016

By Michael Zeff/TPS

Jerusalem (TPS) – Finance Minister Moshe Kahlon and Justice Ministry Director General Emi Palmor announced at a joint press conference on Wednesday evening that gambling machines and horse racing are to be outlawed in Israel.

“Israel’s weakest and poorest are being sold illusions and false hopes every day,” said Minister Kahlon. “As of next year, there will not be a single gambling machine or any horse racing in Israel.”

There are currently some legal forms of gambling permitted in Israel though most are outlawed. The only authorities licensed to provide gambling services are Mifal HaPayis, which operates the Israeli national lottery, and the Sports Betting Council, which manages betting on various sports events. The gambling machines belong to the lottery while horse-race betting is run through the Sports Betting Council.

The announcement was made after a report published on Wednesday by the Commission on Gambling Regulations, a joint think-tank headed by the directors general of the two ministries.

The commission’s recommendations include a limit on the size of the legal gambling sector, a prohibition on operating games with an addictive nature, a tax raise on money earned through gambling, and various other limitations.

The report expects the implementation of its recommendations to drastically curb the growth of the gambling sector in Israel and thus decrease its influence on the Israeli population.

Minister Kahlon announced that he would adopt and implement the recommendations to their full extent.

“It is no coincidence that these gambling machines are found mostly in poor neighborhoods. It is also not a coincidence that we see a sharp rise in lottery revenue the day after welfare checks are sent out every month,” Kahlon explained.

The report claims that while a certain percentage of the gambling revenue accrued by these authorities is meant to go to charity and to state education and welfare projects, only a small amount actually does.

The report further states that there will be a reduction in the operating costs of the Sports Betting Council and the lottery, such as in advertising and sales commissions, thus increasing the state’s share of the revenue.

“Unregulated gambling exclusively and deliberately targets and hurts the country’s weakest communities so as long as I am finance minister, there will be no casinos in Israel,” concluded Kahlon.

TPS / Tazpit News Agency

Deri Backs Down on Shabbat Work Halt on New Rail Line

Wednesday, September 30th, 2015

A court order overruling Deri’s “stop work” decision allows Israel Railways to continue maintenance and construction work on Shabbat.

Israeli Railways can continue carrying out maintenance work and construction of the new high-speed Jerusalem-to rail line on Shabbat after the Justice Ministry and the Supreme Court out-maneuvered Shas leader Aryeh Deri, who also is Minister of Economy.

As reported here last week by the JewishPress.com, Deri scored his political points with his Sephardi Hareidi constituency knowing that his stop work order would not last very long.

Deri’s has backed down from his order against work on Shabbat following a Justice Ministry petition to the Supreme Court against the Ministry of Economy. The court obliged and overruled Deri, who then withdrew his order.

He stated:

The permits to be given or extended shall be valid until a different decision is made, given the court proceeding.

Deri had claimed that Israeli Railways did not obtain a legal permit for working on Shabbat, and he ordered that work on the rail line be halted. Israel Railways claimed that Deri’s decision would delay the inauguration of the high-speed train by 2 years, which mathematically does not make any sense but at least gave the company another excuse for another postponement in completing the massive and oft-mismanaged project.

One delay earlier this year was caused by tunnel engineers who were off the mark during work from both ends of one of the tunnels. It returned out that the opening from each end did not meet in the middle.

Tzvi Ben-Gedalyahu

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/deri-backs-down-on-shabbat-work-halt-on-new-rail-line/2015/09/30/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: