Israeli soldiers from the armoured corps celebrate their return to Israel after pulling out of Gaza.
(photo credit: REUTERS)
The state-attorney’s office has requested that a petition to the High Court of Justice demanding that Operation Protective Edge be declared a war be denied, it said in a response submitted Tuesday.
The petition was filed by the Front for the Public Defense with the purpose of securing greater compensation to civilians who suffered financial loss from the hostilities of the conflict.
The organization claimed that currently, special compensation for civilians for losses incurred only applies to the Gaza border communities but the entire home front was damaged by the conflict with “rockets landing in the heart of Israeli cities in the country’s center.”
In its response to the petition, the state argued that not all avenues for dealing with the issue of compensation had been exhausted.
It said the petition should be rejected in principle for two reasons.
The state-attorney argued that the government is granted very broad discretion with regard to foreign policy and security in general, and the declaration of war in particular, and therefore there was no room for the High Court to instruct the government how to act in this regard.
The state also denied the claim of the petitioners that “the need to declare that war had been initiated was a socio-economic requirement of the first order,” arguing that the simple declaration of war does not automatically allow for the granting of compensation or financial assistance to those affected.
The state-attorney said compensation for war losses are determined by the Law for Property Tax and Compensations Funds, and do not require a declaration of war for the granting of such monies.