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Illegal neighborhood will not be demolished PDF Print E-mail
Sep 05, 2007 at 04:35 PM

Aviram Zino
Published: 09.05.07, 16:35 / Israel News

The High Court of Justice rejected Wednesday the petition filed by Peace Now demanding the demolition of the Matityahu Mizrach neighborhood, located east of the settlement of Modi'in Illit.

Peace Now and the village council of Bil'in, the Palestinian village on whose lands allegedly the neighborhood was built, petitioned the High Court demanding the illegal building project – thousands of residential units built by Heftsiba – be ceased.

About a year ago, former High Court President, Justice Aharon Barak, issued an injunction against the project, but the three-judge panel residing over the hearing decided to revoke it despite "the very serious problem of mass building without any plans or permits."

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In Rachel Corrie verdict, Israel deals new blow to international law
The verdict on the 2003 killing of Rachel Corrie absolved Israel of any wrongdoing, essentially blaming the victim for her death. The trial revealed Israel’s approach to the most fundamental principles of international law, and especially to the duty to protect non-combatants.

By Jeff Halper

For those who hoped for a just verdict on the death of Rachel Corrie, the American student and ISM activist killed by an Israeli bulldozer in Gaza in 2003 as she was defending a Palestinian home about to be demolished, this is a sad day. Not surprising, but still sad and bitter. The judge who decided the case, Oded Gershon, absolved the army of all blame, despite massive and internally contradictory testimony to the contrary. Moreover, he essentially blamed Rachel for her own death, commenting that a “normal person” would have run away from the bulldozer rather than confront it.

Palestinians and Israel human rights activists have learned that justice cannot be obtained through the Israeli judicial system. The Haifa District Court, in which the trial was held, could not have ruled other than how the state wanted. For the past 45 years of Israeli occupation, the Supreme Court has excluded from its rulings all reference to international humanitarian law and to the Fourth Geneva Convention in particular, which protects civilians living in conflict situations and under occupation. Only Israeli law applies in the Occupied Palestinian Territories – military law and orders – and the courts have restricted even that form of law by declaring that in instances of “security,” they defer to the military. As in Rachel’s case, the IDF thus has carte blanche to commit war crimes with impunity, with no fear of accountability or punishment.

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