A protester holds a Palestinian flag in front of an IDF bulldozer in the West Bank [File].
(photo credit: REUTERS)
The High Court of Justice on Wednesday rejected multiple petitions to ban the demolitions of houses belonging to terrorists.
The rejected petitions included one banning all demolitions, and those attempting to block the demolition of the houses of the bulldozer driver in an August 4 terrorist incident and the terrorists in the Har Nof synagogue terrorist attack in which five Israelis were killed in November.
However, the court temporarily froze the order to demolish the home of the terrorist who shot and seriously wounded Temple Mount activist Yehudah Glick in October.
The petitioners had argued that just because the court has accepted demolitions as legal for decades, that does not mean it cannot ban them, citing the court’s famous torture ban decision as one of many examples.
Until 1999, the state and the High Court officially or unofficially endorsed or looked the other way when the Shin Bet (Israel Security Agency) tortured security detainees to obtain information.
But in 1999, the court reversed course, banning the Shin Bet from torturing detainees.
In 2005, the state declared a moratorium on demolitions after a state commission found that they failed to deter terrorists from committing acts of terrorism, the ostensible purpose of the policy.
The state restarted the policy recently, demolishing the homes of the terrorists involved in the kidnapping and subsequent killing the three kidnapped Jewish teens in June, Naftali Fraenkel, Eyal Yifrah and Gilad Shaer, declaring that the security situation in Judea and Samaria has deteriorated to such an extent as to require restarting house demolitions.