On 5 February 2023, the Knesset held yet another debate on the subordination of the Police Commissioner to the National Security Minister. Zulat’s Executive Director Einat Ovadia, who also attended the previous discussion, presented Zulat’s position:
“The day before the elections, the minister promised the families of Hilltop Youths that they would get immunity from criminal prosecution and asserted that State Attorney’s officers who had declared war on the settlements would have to look for new jobs. Glancing at the articles dealing with the Police Commissioner’s subordination and the statements by a politician who is categorically and inherently in conflict of interests with equal enforcement, the goal becomes abundantly clear to us.
“The proposed amendment would legitimize a fatal blow to equality before the law. It would validate and exacerbate problems that the Israel Police already have with regard to profiling, the use of force, and selective enforcement vis-a-vis disadvantaged populations, minority groups, and protesters who hold different political views than those of Minister Ben-Gvir. These problems have been documented in countless governmental and non-governmental reports. In our view, the proposed amendment would allow the National Security Minister to order the police to carry out enforcement based on religious, ethnic, nationality, sex, and gender considerations as well as on personal hostility or political rivalry with a certain group or person.
“The minister would be able to instruct the police to apply enforcement and investigation policies in a way that serves his interests or those of his associates or the government. Officers would be subordinate and loyal to the minister first and only then to the law, as they would need to protect themselves and keep their jobs. If the law presented by the minister has goals other than the politicization of the police, let him appear before the committee and tell the public what those goals are. In our view, this proposal is not detached from the legislative package designed to carry out a regime revolution. I urge the MKs to realize that the government’s plan includes the politicization of the judicial system, public broadcasting, and the law enforcement system, as well as the elimination of the separation of powers. The government is trying to implement it using the ‘salami method’, but we realize that it is part of a general design.”
Watch (Hebrew, no subtitles):