Monday 20 May 2019

Israel seeks to ban photographing or filming soldiers

The Israeli parliament will discuss a law banning the photographing or filming of soldiers in a move condemned by critics as a “dangerous” attempt “to silence criticism of the army”.

Robert Ilatov, a member of the Knesset and the chairman of the right-wing nationalist Yisrael Beiteinu party, proposed a legislation that would punish those found photographing Israeli forces “with the intention of undermining the spirit” of the army by up to 10 years in jail.


The proposal was put forward in the wake of Israel's massacre of protesters in Gaza on May 13. The bill is reportedly supported by Israel's minister of military affairs Avigdor Liberman.


An editorial in Israeli newspaper Haaretz on Sunday denounced the proposed legislation as “dangerous”, saying it aims “to silence criticism of the army, and in particular to prevent human rights organizations from documenting the Israeli army’s actions in the territories”.


“The immediate result of such a prohibition is serious harm to the possibility of protecting human rights and overseeing the army’s activity,” it said. 


“The bill does serious harm to freedom of the press and the public’s right to know,” the editorial added.

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