Herzog Declares New Pardons Policy for Soldiers

Israeli President Isaac Herzog speaks at the Israel Bar Associan’s Justice conference held at the David Intercontinental in Tel Aviv, September 02, 2021. (Avshalom Sassoni/FLASH90)

Israel’s President Isaac Herzog announced a special pardons program on Monday in the spirit of the Aseres Yemai Teshuva, The Jerusalem Post reported.

Herzog called on all IDF soldiers with criminal convictions from their youth, who have since undergone rehabilitation during their military service, to submit requests to the President’s Office to have their criminal records erased as part of the new policy.

The pardons are aimed at removing the barrier a criminal record poses to future employment and to serve as an incentive for teenagers who have been in trouble with the law to join the IDF, or to perform civilian volunteer service.

A special IDF committee headed by the commander of the Educations Corps will encourage and assist in filing requests. The policy applies only to young people who have undergone a process of rehabilitation, expressed full remorse for their actions, and have completely changed their behavior, as testified by their commanders and other professionals. The committee will interview soldiers requesting pardons and forward its recommendations to the president.

The president announced the policy during a tour of the IDF Education Corps Havat Hashomer military base with Defense Minister Benny Gantz, with whom he coordinated the initiative.

Herzog noted that the Aseres Yemai Teshuva provide an opportune time for the state to offer young people forgiveness and a second chance in life.

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