The High Court of Justice on Wednesday instructed the state to examine the absence of women on a committee probing the IDF raid on the Gaza flotilla in May, and indicated that the justices may order the state to appoint a female member even if it requires one of the male members to step down.

The Turkel Commission was appointed in June to examine the conduct of the IDF during a raid on the Mavi Marmara cargo vessel that left nine foreign citizens dead. The panel has five male members – three veteran Israeli figures with an average age of 85, and two foreign observers.

The court order came as a result of a petition issued in July by the organizations “Women Power” and “Women Lawyers for Social Justice.”

In their petition, the groups argued that the law demands that there be an “appropriate number of women on the committee.

The committee has no women whatsoever, much less women from a variety of population groups. The fact that the committee doesn’t have a single woman speaks for itself.”

On Monday, the state told the court that when the committee was being formed, it had offered a spot to three different female legal experts, all of whom refused the post.

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