European Jewish Congress
Israeli Press Review of 16.06.2016
Israeli Press Review
Israeli Press Review of 16.06.2016

Major Headlines
  • Lapid announces platform for premiership

Yesh Atid leader Yair Lapid used the platform of the annual Herzliya Conference on Wednesday to outline his plans for the country should he be elected the next prime minister of Israel, the Jerusalem Post reports.

The conference has been used by leaders in the past to unveil new policies, most notably in 2003 by then-prime minister Ariel Sharon, who announced at the event his plan to withdraw from the Gaza Strip.

Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu was to address the conference on Thursday.

“I am running for prime minister so Israel will return to be a country that inspires and overcomes challenges with accomplishments,” Lapid told the crowd.

“Israel for the past decade has no policies, just crises and responses.”

Lapid complained of a “leadership vacuum” that causes extremist discourse, and said Israelis want to feel that they are part of something big that will change the world.

His seven-point plan for Israel’s future includes an approach to security that is based not only on defence and fences but also offence, to keep conflicts away from Israel.

“We need a fist that is active and can push away aggression, while maintaining the law and the international legitimacy of the State of Israel,” he said.

The second part of the plan calls for regional steps “to remove the Palestinians from our lives, and to create internationally recognised boundaries and a final State of Israel.”

Click here to read the full article in Jerusalem Post


  • Justice ministry says new NGO bill will not be retroactive

The bill requiring non-governmental organisations to report foreign sources of funding will not be enforced retroactively and will only go into effect in the next fiscal year, the Justice Ministry has announced.

The news is considered an achievement for the NGOs that rely on foreign government funding, since there had been talk in the Knesset committee in charge of the draft law that it would be applied from this year or earlier, Ha’aretz reports.

The bill, which was passed in the first of its three reading in the Knesset, will require the NGOs that are affected by it to report their foreign funding starting in 2017. The reports for 2017 are due in mid-2018.

Former Peace Now director Yariv Oppenheimer, who worked to prevent retroactive application of the law, said: “The justice minister’s desire to see people in civil society humiliating themselves publicly will have to wait at least two years. Until then we will continue to fight, politically and legislatively, so the law targeting NGOs will be no more than a passing episode.”

The Justice Ministry also decided that NGOs would not have to cite the donor countries each time they approach Israeli officials, as had been planned. They would only have to do so at the start of Knesset committee meetings, and not at every meeting at the Knesset or government ministries as originally envisioned.

Click here to read the full article in Haaretz


  • Jewish housing approved in east Jerusalem neighbourhood

The Jerusalem District Planning and Building Committee has approved a construction permit for a three-unit building intended for Jews in the largely Palestinian Silwan neighbourhood, Ha’aretz reports.

The Ateret Cohanim non-profit group is behind the plan, one of its latest efforts to expand the Jewish presence in the east Jerusalem neighbourhood. The new building will go up near Beit Yonatan, where Ateret Cohanim began settling Jewish families in 2004.

Click here to read the full article in Haaretz

 

  • Terrorism law approved with fixed terms

The Knesset approved 57–16 on Wednesday the second and third reading of the Terrorism Law, which has been Minister of Justice Ayelet Shaked's flagship bill since she received the portfolio. It will thus enter the Israeli criminal code, Yediot Aharonot reports.

The bill began under Tzipi Livni when she was the minister of justice. It expands the tools used to handle terrorism via criminal and legal mechanisms, extends the maximum sentence for carrying out various terrorism-related crimes to 30 years, anchors in law administrative detentions, and sets sanctions for multiple kinds of terrorism-related offenses.

According to the new law, anyone who heads a terrorist organisation, directly or indirectly, will be sentenced to 25 years' imprisonment. However, if that group carries out attacks, its leader will be sentenced to life in prison. The same sentence is fixed for those who carry out an act of terrorism with chemical, biological or radioactive weapons. Those who receive life sentences will not be able to apply for parole for the first 15 years of their term.

A significant part of the new law is the sentence requirements for anyone who aids terrorists. Those who do will be subject to penalty of five years' imprisonment. The same sanction applies to those who provide services or means to terrorists, unless it is proved that they were not aware that the organisation was in fact a terrorist one.

After the law was approved, Shaked said, "The terrorist attacks in Orlando and Tel Aviv show more than ever that there is no reason for terrorism. There are excuses. Only by comprehensive punishment and deterrence will it be possible to beat it. Today, the Knesset and the State of Israel became the world spearhead of the war on terrorism. Terrorism in its 2016 form is receiving a 2016 response.” 

Click here to read the full article in Yediot Aharonot

 

Thursday, June 16, 2016
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