All Israel
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78 Israeli retired judges release an open letter with grave warning about proposed judicial reforms

An open letter released this week – signed by 78 retired Israeli judges – contained a grave warning about proposed legislation and reforms which could threaten Israel’s democracy.

The authors of the letter also warned of the negative effect that such legislation could have on diaspora communities, as well as the image it would project to the community worldwide.

The letter, also signed by former prominent Supreme Court justices, further cautioned that the rights and freedoms of Israeli citizens – including minorities – could be seriously impacted and expressed overall concern regarding accountability of those who would be in charge of running the government.

Israel’s previous top judicial officials are greatly concerned about the proposed ‘override clause,’ where decisions made by the high court could potentially be vetoed by Knesset law makers.

Former Central District Court Judge Avraham Yaakov initiated the letter, stating that, “Never in the past could we imagine, in the foreseeable future, the destruction of Israeli democracy.” 

The letter further advised against politicians being able to appoint or remove government legal advisors at will which, according to the judges, would result in an emphasis on loyalty to a particular minister rather than a fixed law. 

Another concern was the decision to overturn Israel’s Basic Law of Government – established in 2001 – which, they stated, is a disregard for the moral character of government officials by allowing anyone convicted of a crime to serve in a ministerial position.

The All Israel News Staff is a team of journalists in Israel.

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