High Court Rejects Petition, Clearing Way for Prisoner Release

YERUSHALAYIM -

As expected, Israel’s High Court rejected the petition by the Almagor Terror Victims Association on Tuesday evening to block the release of 26 Palestinian terrorists from prison.

In view of the short time given for consideration of the case, the judges asked the state representative if the release date — Tuesday midnight — was at all flexible.

The State responded that “The government committed through the Americans that at the beginning of the fourth month of negotiations which is today — the second round of releases will take place. For security reasons, there is a need for the transfer and release to happen during nighttime. Therefore, we must follow through with our commitment.”

Attorney Naftali Wertzberger, representing the families, objected that “the schedule is superficial. There is no particular sanctity for tonight at midnight. The court shouldn’t stray from schedule on issues that regard the very core of the tenets of the state. These claims deserve more than two hours worth of review.

“These are murderers of children and elderly by horrific means. The cost is not someone who stole a car or is suspected of being related to a terrorist group, but hard core terrorists. That’s why this is the moment of truth.”

According to the appeal, “Releasing murderers with blood on their hands, even for diplomatic needs, is immoral and a crucial injury to a society founded on values of morality and law.”

Due to the pressure of time, the judges did not issue a written response.

Ortal Tamam, niece of Moshe Tamam who was murdered by a terrorist group in 1984, told Ynet: “I have no legal reasons, but I know what justice is, and I ask the High Court of Justice to promote justice. You don’t always have to look at the pages, but rather at the picture, and the picture shows that 26 terrorists who murdered intentionally will be released today. I was raised for peace, not war, but this is not peace.”