Bill aims to 'silence criticism of the army', critics say
'Israel’s parliament is to consider a law banning the photographing or filming of soldiers, in what critics claim is a “dangerous” attempt to undermine scrutiny of the Israeli Defence Forces (IDF).
Under the proposed legislation, entitled the “Prohibition against photocopying and documenting IDF Soldiers”, those found photographing troops “with the intention of undermining the spirit” of the army can be punished by up to 10 years in prison.
“Anyone who filmed, photographed, and/or recorded soldiers in the course of their duties, with the intention of undermining the spirit of IDF soldiers and residents of Israel, shall be liable to five years imprisonment,” says the bill, proposed by Robert Ilatov, a member of the Knesset and the chairman of the right-wing nationalist Yisrael Beiteinu party.
“Anyone intending to harm state security will be sentenced to 10 years’ imprisonment.”
The proposal was put forward in the wake of the deadliest day in the Gaza Strip since the 2014 war. Medical officials said least 60 Palestinians were killed and thousands wounded on 14 May when Israeli troops fired at demonstrators protesting Israeli occupation.
Explanatory notes accompanying Mr Ilatov’s bill, which is reportedly supported by Defence Minister Avigdor Liberman, say: “For many years now, the state of Israel has witnessed a worrying phenomenon of documentation of IDF soldiers.'
Read more: Israel considering law to ban photographing or filming of IDF soldiers