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Knesset Prepares to Reject Court Order to Fund Legal Defense for Hamas Nukhba Terrorists | The Jewish Press – JewishPress.com | Hana Levi Julian | 5 Tammuz 5784 – Thursday, July 11, 2024

Photo credit: Chaim Goldberg / Flash 90

Israel Prison Service personnel guard Hamas Nukhba terrorists captured during the October 7 massacre and IDF operations in the Gaza Strip, at a prison in southern Israel, on February 14, 2024.

A bill to deny foreign terrorists legal representation paid for by Israeli taxpayers was introduced to the Knesset on Wednesday by Likud MK Dan Illouz, Israel’s CAN News the public broadcaster reported.

“The current situation where the State of Israel is being asked to finance the legal representation of the Nukhba terrorists is unfathomable,” Illouz said in a statement.

“This is an absurdity and a serious miscarriage of justice. The State of Israel will not fund the defense of those who massacred us on October 7th. We will not help it in any way.”

The Knesset’s constitutional committee will discuss the issue next week, according to the report.

“During discussions in the committee, I proposed two options – either the Palestinian Authority would finance the protection of the terrorists or they would receive special defenders on behalf of the state,” said the chairman of the committee Religious Zionism MK Simcha Rothman.

“Unfortunately, in the discussions that have been conducted so far on the subject, a false representation was made, when judges in fact made decisions about the representation of terrorists, which could mean that the treasury and at the expense of a reasonable cost of representation of the victims.”

The bill denies state-funded legal representation to terrorists who are not citizens or residents of Israel accused of terrorism. It came in response to a ruling by Israel’s Supreme Court that called on the state to pay for a defense lawyer for Hamas Nukhba terrorists who attacked Israel on October 7 and beyond.

Religious Zionist Party Chairman and Finance Minister Bezalel Smotrich strongly condemned the decision, calling it a “loss of values” and vowed that Israeli citizens would not be forced to pay for the legal defense of their enemies. “Never, and especially in this period of challenging fiscal issues, when we must scrape our budgetary sources from the threshing floor and from the vineyard for the myriad needs of Israeli society,” Smotrich wrote in a letter.

“The law requires representation by a defense attorney to hold a custodial hearing,” a court spokesperson said. “Since these are hearings that take place in a visual board, several legal decisions were made to appoint a private defense lawyer and finance the fees from the treasury.

“The Administrator of the Courts approached the Ministry of Justice with a view to investigating the manner in which the judicial decisions are implemented and to find a source of budget, and the matter is still under consideration,” the court spokesman said.

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