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Sept. 2010, Comprehensive report Void of Responsibility: Israel Military Policy


Sep 14, 2010
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From the beginning of the first intifada, in December 1987, to the outbreak of the second intifada, in September 2000, the Military Police Investigation Unit (MPIU) investigated almost every case in which Palestinians not taking part in hostilities were killed. At the beginning of the second intifada, the Judge Advocate General’s Office announced that it was defining the situation in the Occupied Territories an “armed conflict,” and that investigations would be opened only in exceptional cases, in which there was a suspicion that a criminal offense had been committed. This policy, which led to a significant drop in MPIU investigations of homicide cases, ignored the varying character of the army’s actions in the Occupied Territories, and treated every act carried out by soldiers as a combat action, even in cases when these acts bear the clear hallmarks of a policing action.

But things have changed.

During the period covered by the report (2006-2009), B'Tselem made a demand for an MPIU investigation in 148 cases. The Judge Advocate General’s Office ordered an MPIU investigation in only 22 cases. In 36.3 percent of the cases in which an MPIU investigation was opened, the investigation did not begin until a year or more after the incident occurred. Where an MPIU investigation was carried out, two ended with the Judge Advocate General’s Office’s decision to close the file without prosecution; the others await decision. In 95 cases, 1 6 of which date from 2006, preliminary handling by the Judge Advocate General’s Office has not been completed, and B'Tselem has not been informed whether an MPIU investigation will be ordered.

For link to full report: B'Tselem - Publications - By Void of Responsibility, Sept. 2010
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