Ayelet Shaked, nouvelle ministre de la Justice.
(photo credit: MARC ISRAEL SELLEM/THE JERUSALEM POST)
Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked said on Sunday that she is pushing to have Israeli law applied to the West Bank within one year.
She stated this at a conference in Jerusalem organized by the Legal Forum for the Land of Israel despite vehement opposition to the idea by senior ministry staff, including former attorney-general Yehuda Weinstein.
“I established a joint committee along with the Defense Ministry to work on legislation for Judea and Samaria, the purpose essentially being that, ultimately, any law passed in the Knesset will either apply to Judea and Samaria by virtue of the legislation itself, or by an order of the general [the head of the IDF’s Central Command, who legislates in the West Bank], or by any other manner considered appropriate,” she explained when asked on stage about the Hok Hanormot (Normalizing Law) for applying Israeli law to the West Bank.
“And I tell you, second, that as justice minister, I will give this priority. I have dedicated staff to this, that there should be a real, thought-out legislative process.... I repeat again that this might be by virtue of a general’s order, as has been done until now,” she said.
“But so far, this has not been done sufficiently and not promptly enough,” she continued. “Most of the laws are very narrow. Laws about the environment, about workplace law, do not apply in Judea and Samaria. And my purpose, ultimately, is by one year from now, every law passed in the Knesset will automatically be translated either by a general’s order or by regular legislation into applying to Judea and Samaria.”
Although Shaked mentioned only the West Bank and did not distinguish the differences that might apply to Jews and Palestinians, past versions of the law sought to apply Israeli law specifically to Israelis in the West Bank. The current ambiguity between Jews and Palestinians was one of Weinstein’s significant objections.
MK Tzipi Livni (Zionist Union) said the path Shaked was taking would lead to a binational state, with a Palestinian majority in the Knesset.
“The right-wing government is quietly beginning the process of annexation in order to impose its ideology,” she stated. “The final result will be the collapse of the twostate idea, the imposition of two legal systems in one state, mass international pressure and, in the end, 2.5 million Palestinians with the right to vote for Knesset.”
According to Livni, the threat of a binational state is “no less dramatic” than that coming from Iran.
“We must continue fighting for a Jewish and democratic state,” she said.
Meretz chairwoman Zehava Gal-On accused Shaked of “combining annexation and apartheid,” and making Israel “stink” and “a leper” in world opinion.
“The law seeks to make different norms apply to Israeli citizens no matter where they live, to indirectly apply the State of Israel’s laws to settlers in the territories through a military order, but in reality, it creates racial discrimination,” Gal-On said.
“Even the previous attorney- general, Yehuda Weinstein, opposed bills that would apply the Knesset’s laws to settlements,” she pointed out.
“He said these bills harm the status of OC Central Command, the sovereign in the territories... and give it to the Knesset, in opposition to the legal framework of laws of war, according to which the area is managed.”
Recently, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu announced to the world that the Golan Heights, which have been under Israeli law since 1981 despite having a status equal to that of the West Bank under international law, would remain in Israeli hands forever. Politicians and activists on the Right noted with disappointment that he did not make the same comment about the West Bank.