Adalah calls to reject an Israeli Government proposed bill allowing warrantless searches that will lead to racial policing

This pending bill is one of several measures initiated by the government under the pretext of combatting crime in Arab communities; Adalah: These policies will lead to grave rights’ violations and over-policing of Palestinian citizens of Israel only, thus creating separate law enforcement systems.

Adalah – The Legal Center for Arab Minority Rights in Israel calls on members of the Israeli Knesset to reject the Government proposed bill that expands the police's powers to raid homes, businesses, and places of entertainment and to seize property without a warrant.


Adalah warns that the approval of the bill – a part of several measures included in the government’s plan to combat crime in the Arab society – will lead to disproportionate and sweeping violation of Palestinian citizens' civil rights and to discriminatory over-policing of Palestinian communities and neighborhoods in Israel, on the basis of their national identity. Adalah further warns against the increasing alienation between Palestinian citizens and Israeli police as a result of police brutality and disproportionate use of force.


On 4 November 2021, Adalah Attorney Adi Mansour sent a letter to Israel’s Minister of Justice Gideon Sa’ar, Attorney General Avichai Mandelblit, and Deputy Attorney General (Criminal) Raz Nazeri, which detailed Adalah’s position on the Government bill. Adalah argues that the expansion of police powers, including police discretion without judicial oversight, jeopardizes the rights of Palestinian citizens, the intended target of the bill and its enforcement. The letter further states that defining the proposal as a "temporary order" and limiting its validity for a year and a half does not rectify or mitigate the violation of rights. Temporal limitations in the bill’s validity would not substantially reduce the harm, and the Knesset has historically and frequently passed “temporary orders” that have been effectively rendered permanent legislation through continued extensions of the orders’ validity. For example, the Citizenship and Entry into Israel Law --2003, which prevented family unification, was in force for 17 years, despite its original enactment as a temporary order.


CLICK HERE to read Adalah’s letter [Hebrew]


Adalah Attorney Adi Mansour commented:

“This bill joins a series of alarming measures initiated by the Israeli government under the pretext of fighting crime, which leads not only to the trampling of Palestinian citizens'  basic rights but also to the establishment of separate law enforcement systems for Jewish  and Arab citizens of the state – a common practice of regimes that perpetuate racial discrimination. Knesset members must halt this slippery slope of increasingly dangerous moves, which include authorizing the Shabak (Shin Bet) to unlawfully operate in Arab towns and villages, and other measures that violate the rights of Palestinians.”


CLICK HERE to read the bill to amend the Criminal Procedure (Arrest and Searches) (Searches without Court Order) (Temporary Order) -2021 (Hebrew)


Related press releases:

Adalah: Israeli Government’s decision to involve the Shin Bet and army to fight crime in Arab society is racist and illegal 4 October 2021

Israeli Police establish a paramilitary undercover unit assigned to operate exclusively within Arab towns 2 September




Photo: Israel Police / Instagram