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Human Rights Groups: Disband Leftist Team in Justice Ministry

NGOs meeting Attorney General to claim team headed by Shai Nitzan hounds Jewish communities.
By Gil Ronen
First Publish: 7/7/2010, 8:19 PM

Flash 90

Three human rights NGOs will meet Attorney General Yehudah Weinstein Thursday to ask for the disbanding of what they say is a biased team in the Ministry of Justice. The Legal Forum for the Land of Israel, the Organization for Human Rights in Judea and Samaria and Regavim want a special team headed by Deputy State Prosecutor Shai Nitzan to cease operation.

The Team for Law Enforcement in the Territories, as the crew is called, has continued operating despite a 1998 decision by then-Attorney General Elyakim Rubinstein to disband it. The team has held meetings on a monthly basis under Nitzan's leadership.

The Subcommittee on Judea and Samaria in the Knesset's Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee discussed the team's continued operation in December and reached the conclusion that the team was ideologically motivated and that its actions were directed almost solely against Jewish residents of Judea and Samaria and other nationalists.

Subcommittee Head MK Ze'ev Elkin (Likud) said at the time after studying protocols of the team's sessions that it was clearly operating in contravention of decisions by the government and the Attorney General, and even flouting the team's own letter of appointment.

Nitzan admitted to the subcommittee that his team tended to follow up on complaints lodged by leftist human rights NGOs while ignoring complaints by nationalist human rights groups.