The Rule of Law in Israel

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-In a number of cities “intransigent registrars and rabbis” are refusing to recognize state-sanctioned conversions to Judaism, and it is proposed that these people, “who receive their salaries and draw authority from the state,â€? be fired. (Haaretz)

-Yossi Sarid observes, “it is difficult to point out even one law in Israel that is properly enforced – from the Minimum Wage Law to the law ensuring free education. But the law on smoking in public places – that one is enforced energetically and with strange fervor…Where there is neither will nor way to deal with serious business, they deal with little thingsâ€?. (Haaretz)

-An Israeli district court fined the Education Ministry $3,500 for violating the Freedom of Information Law by hiding a quarter million dollar million study on the results of math achievement tests that showed the superiority of a method developed by two chareidi teachers from Bnei Brak. The judge noted that Education Ministry officials knowingly committed perjury by claiming that they did not have the test results. (Shema Yisrael Torah Network)

-Israel’s Housing Ministry is moving construction of more than 1,000 residential units in East Jerusalem’s Har Homa neighborhood on land held by “absentee” Palestinians. The move is said to be in violation of both a 2005 instruction from the attorney general to stop applying the absentee law in East Jerusalem and explicit promises to the U.S. not to apply that law in the capital’s eastern quarters. (Haaretz)

-The Israeli human rights group Yesh Din charges that Israel’s military court system for Palestinian suspects in the West Bank produces 99.7% convictions with the average hearing just two minutes long. Hearings were held in Hebrew and the Arabic-speaking suspects often did not understand the charges brought against them, and “Most are detained in Israel and their attorneys are not able to meet them.”  The IDF says the report was filled with flaws, faulty research methods and mistaken analysis. (The Jerusalem Post)

Posted on January 16, 2008

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