Jerusalem, 21 July 2002

Announcement from Attorney-General’s Office
(Communicated by the Justice Ministry Spokesman)

Attorney-General Elyakim Rubinstein last Friday, July 19, 2002, held a three-hour discussion in his office on the steps the security establishment has requested to take against the families of suicide-terrorists and those who dispatch them. State Prosecutor Edna Arbel, IDF Military Advocate-General Maj.-Gen. Menachem Finkelstein, and senior Justice Ministry, ISA, IDF and Foreign Ministry officials attended the meeting.

Two main issues were discussed – the demolition of the homes of suicide-terrorists and those who dispatch them and the moving of family members of suicide-terrorists and those who dispatch them from Judea and Samaria to Gaza. All those present made it clear that these steps are likely to be influential vis-a-vis the prevention of suicide-attacks.

Atty.-Gen. Rubinstein mentioned the considerable difficulty in rendering decisions on such complex issues with the position of the security establishment on the one hand and legal restrictions, High Court of Justice rulings and international treaties on the other.

The demolition of homes was approved as long as the necessary legal conditions are met.

Regarding the moving of the family members of suicide-bombers from Judea and Samaria to Gaza, Atty.-Gen. Rubinstein determined that – in accordance with legal opinions that he has received from various security officials – the issue gives rise to many legal difficulties, which he has documented in an opinion passed on to Prime Minister Ariel Sharon and persons relevant to the subject. Given the difficulties which are apparent to us, the matter may be considered vis-a-vis persons directly involved; however, there is no tangible possibility of applying it in regard to those against whom there is no evidence of their involvement.