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15.6.2006

HaMoked has petitioned the HCJ against the refusal by the military to process the request of a Palestinian youth to enter the West Bank in order to be registered in the Palestinian population registry: The military is using the political boycott of Hamas as a pretext for refraining from processing applications lawfully forwarded by the Palestinian administrative authorities. This constitutes a gross violation of international law, which forbids a military commander from exercising or refusing to exercise his authorities on the basis of political considerations

On 15 June 2006 HaMoked submitted a petition to the High Court of Justice (HCJ) relating to the failure by the military to process an application from a Palestinian youth to enter the West Bank from Jordan in order to be registered in the Palestinian Population Registry. 

According to the interim accords between Israel and the PLO, the Palestinian Authority has the power to register children of residents under the age of 16. Israel has conditioned registration on the presence of the child in the Territories at the time of registration, despite the fact that no such condition appears in the agreements. In October 2000, Israel froze the processing of visitors’ permits for the West Bank. It has begun to allow such permits for the children of residents under the age of 16 who need to enter the area for the purpose of their registration, only recently and under the pressure of HCJ petitions. The current petition was submitted after Israel again froze the processing of such applications, this time following the political boycott of Hamas. One of the manifestations of this boycott is the military authorities' refusal to process applications for visitors’ permits forwarded through the Palestinian District Coordination Offices (DCOs). 

It should be noted that in accordance with the law applying in the Territories, children one of whose parents is a Palestinian are entitled to be registered in the Population Registry until they reach the age of 16. The army does not permit children above the age of 16 to receive any status in the West Bank. Accordingly, if the Petitioner is not registered, this will cause irreparable damage to himself and his family. In light of this danger, HaMoked also submitted an urgent request for an interim decision. 

In its petition, HaMoked determines that the decision by the Israeli government to boycott the Palestinian Authority cannot apply to powers exercised by the OC Central Command in his capacity as the military commander in the West Bank. This is the only possible interpretation of the government decision that is consonant with the purpose of honoring international law. 

The military is trying to have its cake and eat it. On the one hand, it is not willing for the Palestinian Authority to issue visitors’ permits. On the other, it refuses to accept the direct submission of applications. The army proposed a “solution” to this problem whereby the application for a visitor’s permit would be forwarded by a “junior clerk not identified with Hamas.” The petition determines that this “solution” is cynical, impractical, and unlawful. 

Read the petition (Hebrew) 

Read the urgent application for an interim decision (Hebrew)

mail@hamoked.org.il (02) 627 1698   (02) 627 6317

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