Bill to Bar Arms Exports to Human Rights Violators

YERUSHALAYIM -
Likud MK Yehuda Glick (Hadas Parush/Flash90)
Likud MK Yehuda Glick (Hadas Parush/Flash90)

Two unlikely allies — left-wing Tamar Zandberg of Meretz and right-wing Yehuda Glick of Likud — have joined in sponsoring a bill to bar defense exports to countries guilty of severe human-rights abuses, Globes reported on Monday.

In the preamble to the bill, they note that “over the years exports of Israeli arms have taken place to countries in which severe infringements of human rights were being perpetrated at the time.”

“Severe infringements” include such practices as torture, humiliating treatment and punishments, long periods of detention without trial, and holding people in secret prisons.

The bill would require that the list of countries to which Israel exports arms be made available to the public, and a database would be set up for this purpose. The Ministry of Defense currently does not disclose the names of countries to which it permits arms exports.

Col. (res.) Dubi Lavi, head of the Defense Export Controls Agency (DECA) in the Ministry of Defense, said of the proposal, “Under existing law, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs must be a partner in these processes, and if it objects to the award of an export license for defense products on the grounds of human rights breaches, no license will be given. In any case in which international sanctions are imposed by the United Nations on any country, Israel adopts them.”