The IDF announced changes to its investigation policy in incidents where Arabs are killed by IDF fire in Judea and Samaria. The State notified the Supreme Court of the changed policy Wednesday. The IDF Military Advocate General, Maj. Gen. Avichai Mandelblit, decided to amend the policy which had been in place since the year 2000.
According to the previous policy, initiating an investigation with the Criminal Investigations Division of the IDF Military Police Corps (referred to in Hebrew as Metzach - ed.) was determined by a fact-finding inquiry, conducted in the field.
The new policy requires that every case in which uninvolved Arabs are killed by IDF fire be investigated immediately by the Criminal Investigation Division. This will apply unless it occurred during an activity with 'clear elements of combat' (e.g. a exchange of fire).
The IDF Military Advocate General's Office discussed this policy change over recent months with IDF Chief of the General Staff, Lt. Gen. Benny Gantz, retired IDF Chief of the General Staff, Lt. Gen. Gabi Ashkenazi, Head of Central Command, Maj. Gen. Avi Mizrahi and commanders of the Judea and Samaria Division.
A governmental press release explained that during these discussions, "it became apparent that due to the efforts of the IDF, the ISA and other security forces, the extent of IDF activity in the Judea and Samaria Region that entails clear elements of combat has been reduced."
The Military Advocate General's decision, made in coordination with the Attorney General of Israel, reflects the changes in IDF activity in the region, and therefore does not apply to incidents which occurred in Gaza, where IDF activity entails clear elements of combat.