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Israel's Draconian Infiltration Law

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Israel's Draconian Infiltration Law - by Stephen Lendman

Israel is a rogue police state.

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On January 10, Haaretz writer Jonathan Lis headlined, "Knesset passes (Law to Prevent Infiltration) that could put asylum seekers in jail without trial," saying:

"The bill would make 'illegal' migrants and asylum seekers liable to jail, without trial or deportation, if caught staying in Israel for 'long periods.' "

Moreover, anyone helping them or providing shelter faces five to 15 years in prison for being a good samaritan. Avoiding it involves proving they didn't know the refugee lacked residency status and wasn't guilty of alleged criminality.

Netanyahu and extremists around him sponsored the bill. It followed a similar July 2010 proposal, dropped after widespread criticism.

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The measure amends the 1954 Law to Prevent Infiltration. Limited to emergency conditions, it specifically targeted Palestinian and other Arab Fedayeen freedom fighters.

The new measure targets refugees and asylum seekers and families. Minimally, they'll be imprisoned for three years. However, detentions may be extended indefinitely.

The law only allows judicial oversight by an administrative court after 14 days. It's forbidden to release detainees sooner than three years except under very hard to prove extraordinary humanitarian circumstances.

The bill's previous version mandated life sentences for refugees and asylum seekers convicted of property damage, including offenses as minor as graffiti. Persons providing aid faced five to 15 year sentences.

The Association for Civil Rights (ACRI) in Israel called the 2010 measure "one of the most dangerous bills ever presented in the Knesset." Despite softening, its new version remains brazenly draconian, undemocratic and shameful.

ACRI calls it "draconian and immoral, and its entire purpose is to deter refugees from entering Israel. The law blatantly disregards Israel's most basic commitments as a member of the community of nations and as a signatory to the Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees."

"The State of Israel has the right to protect its borders, but not by trampling human rights and ignoring democratic values."

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In 2010, ACRI explained "lies and reality" in the bill's original version. It main provisions included:


  • imprisoning legitimate asylum seekers for five years to life;

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I was born in 1934, am a retired, progressive small businessman concerned about all the major national and world issues, committed to speak out and write about them.

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