New coalition bill seeks to limit terrorist releases

Legislation would allow court to stop president from pardoning murderers with nationalist motivation.

December 31, 2013 19:53
1 minute read.
Protest against Palestinian prisoner release in Jerusalem.

Protest against Palestinian prisoner release Jerusalem. (photo credit: Marc Israel Sellem/The Jerusalem Post)

Coalition MKs submitted legislation meant to prevent further prisoner releases Tuesday, by limiting the president’s ability to pardon murderers.

MKs Ayelet Shaked (Bayit Yehudi) and David Tsur (Hatnua) proposed an amendment to Basic Law: President of the State that would allow the courts to forbid the president from pardoning murderers or terrorists that committed crimes with nationalist motivations, as part of the criminals’ sentences.

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Lawmakers from Likud Beytenu and Kadima also signed the bill.

In light of Tuesday’s prisoner release, Shaked said it’s important to set “limits to the diplomatic insanity,” by allowing courts to decide if a murderer can be pardoned. This way, they cannot be used as a tool for future negotiations.

“Freeing terrorists was never a redline for any government.

Therefore, it’s important that we, as law makers, can be able to stop contemptible and abominable [actions] like pardoning murderous terrorists,” the Bayit Yehudi MK explained.

According to Shaked, “prisoner releases are not proportionate and are pointless. We must bring the country back on track.”

Tsur expressed hope that the bill will stop “hateful murderers, who took the lives of innocents and were sentenced to life in prison, will not be pardoned in a way that is not just.”

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