An unusual request to summon Palestinian Authority judges to testify in Israeli court was submitted to the Jerusalem District Court by 52 Arab collaborators with Israel and their estates.
The plaintiffs, through attorney Barak Kedem from the firm of Arbus Kedem Tzur, are seeking to summon for testimony and interrogation the three PA judges who sentenced a collaborator to death, as well as the PA Attorney General and the firing squad members who carried out the sentence.
Monzar Hafnawi, a Jew who grew up in Shechem as the son of an Arab father and a Jewish mother who moved to Shechem from Israel, was one of the biggest traders in the Palestinian Authority. In 2001, Hafnawi was arrested on suspicion of collaborating with Israel. Following six months of severe physical torture, he was tried by a PA court that sentenced him to death by firing squad and confiscated all his property, including all his factories, bank accounts, and real estate assets.
A video that was submitted to the Jerusalem District Court as part of the evidence shows Hefnawi’s trial, the Attorney General’s appearance, Hafnawi’s denial of the charges, the incited mob seeking his death, and his execution by a firing squad.
Hafnawi’s estate and 51 collaborators represented by attorneys Barak Kedem and Aryeh Arbus are suing the Palestinian Authority for their abduction, imprisonment, and torture by PA officials. in a partial ruling, the Jerusalem District Court has already awarded them NIS 13 million ($3.8 million) for being deprived of their liberty.
Their main claim, in the amount of hundreds of millions of shekels, as compensation for their torture, disabilities, rape, and murder, continues to be heard by the same court.
Attorney Barak Kedem told Hakol Hayehudi: “The interrogation of Palestinian judges and interrogators on the witness stand in the Jerusalem District Court will shed light on the horrific interrogations conducted by the PA, the medieval torture devices in the PA’s detention dungeons, the showcase trials to the cheers of the agitated mob, and murder under the auspices of the law by firing squads.”
“Israel, a signatory to the International Convention against Torture, cannot stand aside when such torture is carried out half an hour’s drive from her capital,” Kedem said. “Israel must prosecute anyone involved in these atrocities. And when it comes to collaborators, Israel’s commitment is twofold. These collaborators risked their lives to help Israel prevent terrorism, death, and bereavement. The courts of Israel must do justice to them and impose significant compensation on the PA that will reflect the damage and the aversion of a civilized society to barbaric torture.”