Monday, January 12, 2015

  • Monday, January 12, 2015
  • Elder of Ziyon
The Jenin Magistrate Court has announced that under Palestinian Authority law, the Oslo agreements are no longer in force.

Looking at the question of whether the PA court system has any jurisdiction to try Jews who are alleged to commit crimes over the Green Line, the Jenin Magistrate Court Judge Ahmed al-Ashqar ruled that the Oslo Accords were only meant to be temporary and that they envisioned a final agreement within five years. No agreement since then has extended the agreements, explicitly or implicitly, according to the court. Combined with "Palestine" being considered a state by many international actors and bodies, the court ruled that statehood has created a new reality that supersedes Oslo, and that the PA institutions working for a fully sovereign state under occupation.

There is an inconsistency there that the decision seems to paper over. If the "State of Palestine" is indeed under belligerent occupation, then under international law Israel can replace the justice system in the territories. Yet this decision says "the mandate of the Palestinian courts derives from the right of the Palestinian people of the sovereign in the exercise of his powers in the state and at home through three powers under Article 2 of the Amended Basic Law for the year 2003, including the judiciary, which by courts of different types and grades, which pronounce judgments on behalf of the Palestinian Arab people." If they are under occupation, the only rights the court system would have would be the rights that the occupier allows. And the occupier has not said that the provisions under the Oslo accords has been abrogated.

Arab experts interviewed were ecstatic, saying that this ruling gives Palestinian Arabs the right to prosecute any Jews in the disputed territories, or seemingly any Israeli who crosses the Green Line, who they consider a criminal.

Of course, if Oslo is abrogated, then it means that Israel's obligations under the accords have ended as well.

(h/t Bob Knot)



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